It's gratifying to be able to say that had I been tasting either of these vintages blind I'm sure I would have put a higher price tag on them. More often, it's the other way round.
The two are different, but the regional identity of Coonawarra red wine is there in both, as is Wynns' trademark clarity and expressiveness (you see it again in the excellent 2019 Coonawarra Estate 'Black Label' Cabernet Sauvignon, £24.99, Majestic).
The 2021 Shiraz is cooler, more intense, more precise, the 2020 a touch riper and looser (not just reflecting the year's difference in age), but both wines are medium-full rather than full bodied and both have aromas of violets, blueberry and blackcurrant, with a little more blackberry sweetness in the 2020 and a little more leafy freshness and crunch in the 2021. There are savoury dark chocolate and black olive notes, sleek tannins, discreetly toasted oak and appetising energy in both vintages, too.
These are reds that can be cellared – the 2021 until 2030, the 2020 until 2028 – which is another thing that makes them such good value, but they're eminently drinkable now and versatile with food.
I had them with an almost vegan dinner of kolokithopita (spiced butternut squash and sultana filo pie – Georgina Hayden's recipe but without the sugar), walnut-stuffed aubergine rolls (nigvziani badrijani) and baked red peppers stuffed with tomatoes, breadcrumbs, Parmesan and fresh pesto. I also enjoyed them with spicy pork steaks, venison sausages and a chorizo and butter bean stew. I'm tempted to try soy, ginger and honey marinated salmon next. 13.6%. Empty bottle weight: 535g.
Wynns Coonawarra Estate Shiraz 2020/2021, Coonawarra, Australia
£11.99 mix six, or £14.99 single bottle, Majestic. There is currently more of the 2020 in stores.
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