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Professional Ratings: 99 The Wine Advocate, 96 Wine Spectator, 95 Wine Enthusiast, 95 International Wine Cellar, 92 Wine & Spirits
Region: McLaren Vale, Australia
Other Info: Collectible Wines, Boutique Wines
Style: Big & Bold
Alcohol By Volume: 14.5%
Item no. 92327
This is Clarendon Hills' flagship wine. It is a member of Clarendon Hills' 'Grand Cru' classification.
Every year, the Astralis vineyard produces the most beautiful wine in our cellar. Despite its non-differentiated treatment in the cellar, it always reveals the most rounded, sublime and seamless expression of syrah which ages like a rock.
The vast wealth of this wine's varietal depth extends beyond the parameters of syrah - beckoning superlatives. Amazingly svelte in its balance of varietal depth with restrained power and super finely integrated extract, it is light on its feet and majestic once in focus. Overriding harmony meets an anarchical expression of Australian classic syrah. Lifted florals dance with rich meats, coffee, cola, chocolate, pan forte, turkish delight, graphite, bitumen, cigar tobacco, black cardamom, good quality soy sauce and crushed rocks. It is dense, yet creamy smooth.
This is a wine that is always the most beautiful in our cellar. We recommend it is always decanted. Only the patient will recoup the full dividend of cellaring this masterpiece.
At the top of the pyramid is the 2005 Syrah Astralis Vineyard. It is sourced from a vineyard planted in 1920 and is one of the Syrah cuvees in which 100% new oak is utilized (along with Brookman, Hickinbotham, and Piggott Range). It delivers an ethereal bouquet of smoky oak, violets, espresso, black pepper, blueberry, and blackberry liqueur. Densely packed and tightly wound, all it needs is time. The wine is totally harmonious, impeccably balanced, and exceptionally long. When it fully unwinds, even my high rating will appear conservative. Its only competition comes from the likes of Guigal, Chapoutier, Chave, Krankl, and Ringland.
Supple, graceful and pointedly focused, offering a whoosh of blackberry, cherry, dusky spice and clotted cream character that zings across the palate, picking up hints of espresso and mineral as the finish rockets on and on. Impressive for its deceptive power and harmony. Syrah. Best from 2010 through 2020. 500 cases imported.
Astralis has become one of Australia’s top collectibles, and Roman Bratasiuk’s 2005 version is once again top-shelf stuff. It’s full-bodied and rich without being over the top, balancing dark-chocolate-covered blackberries and blueberries with more complex savory notes (spice, grilled meat). While it’s a big, hulking wine at first, the finish shows great elegance and finesse, ending with silky tannins. Best from 2014
Glass-staining purple. A room-filling bouquet displays the full range of dark fruits, with exotic Asian spices, graphite, cured tobacco, lavender perfume and rose pastille adding complexity. Mouthcoating boysenberry and kirsch flavors are complicated by high-octane chocolate, candied licorice, vanilla bean and floral pastilles, with a bright cracked pepper quality adding lift. Supple tannins mount on the finish, adding structure but allowing the jaw-dropping fruit to shine through. If you have the means and the access, this is one to buy.
Astralis is a wine of unchecked power, supercharged by oak and alcohol, a blast of sweet raspberry fruit that doesn't stop for pedestrians. Whatever burn the alcohol leaves in its wake is incidental if there's a mammoth steak nearby.