Paradise IV Dardel Shiraz 2016
A strong magenta hue: elevated by wild berries, red and black; as it opens cracked black pepper and graphite notes come to the fore. The palate is smooth, silky and spicy with a taut fruit profile powered by fine, savoury tannins that add depth and structure. A textural wine that is balanced and flows effortlessly on the palate. A darker more brooding wine reflecting the vintage. The 2015 was floral and feminine; the 2016 is mineral and layered with dark berries and plum fruit providing flesh to the structural bones. Certainly a wine that will age well over the next 10 - 15 years.
Benchmark Australian Icon Wine of the Year - Jemery Oliver Good Wine Guide 2017
Neal has long been an under-the-radar star of the Australian winemaking scene. Serving an initial apprenticeship alongside Rick Kinzbrunner at Giaconda for the best part of two decades, it is his own label Paradise IV that has really shown the breadth of his winemaking prowess and his innate understanding of texture, balance and flavour in wine. In recent years it has been Doug's Chardonnay that has caught the imagination of press and punter alike, but the reds have always been much more than a supporting cast. In particular, the Dardel Shiraz can rightly be considered a benchmark for the Geelong region. It is elegance, balance and finesse personified - it recalls the great wines of the Northern Rhone, this is the best he has ever made. One of the finest shirazes yet made in Australia, this is a landmark cool climate wine. Wild, musky and faintly meaty aromas of deep, lustrous black, blue and and red berries lifted by profound floral scents reveal nuances of cedar and animal hide. Medium-bodied, it's densely packed with pastille-like flavours of cassis, blackberries and dark plums, extending smooth and velvety down a tight-grained and slatey spine, building intensity towards a long, seamless finish of mineral and savoury qualities. Extraordinary. JEREMY OLIVER