Thursday, February 11, 2010


- McLaren Vale, SA
- $54-$69
- Screwcap
- 15.0%alc

d'Arenberg's Ironstone Pressings must be considered a quintessential expression of an old vine McLaren Vale GSM. The 2007 Ironstone will see a slightly delayed release date (expect June 2010), so the classical 2006, which has already been available for over a year, remains current vintage.

Bright ruby-red, musky and spicy, this suitably perfumed blend unloads floral whiffs of raspberry, blueberry and currants supported by a gentle tone of cedar/chocolate oak and exotic spice. A hint of alcohol also edges its way in. Quite full and robust, its rich, chewy palate reveals a deeply flavoured symposium of meaty, juicy dark berry and plum characters, with a penetratingly long finish drawn out beautifully by a persistent core of bright, sour-edged fruit coated in assertive and coarse, yet savoury and natural tannins. Oak plays a secondary role here (approx. 12 months), allowing its vivid, generously ripened old vine fruit to command the show.

ü+ The Ironstone Pressings sits right among the top tier of Australian GSM blends price wise, and the 2006 justifiably sits among the top tier quality wise as well. It's a truly distinctive McLaren Vale red (even with the generous alcohol) blessed by enough even ripeness, depth, length and structure to suggest it'll cellar as well as any of its peers. Drink to 2021.
94 points


  1. Love a good D'arenberg and love a good GSM - who doesn't!
    Looks like I will have to save up for this one though! TC

  2. Yeah it's a great GSM Tim and well worth saving up for, especially if it's for laying down. I couldn't think of too many more cellar worthy GSMs floating around Aus at the moment than this one....... 10-15 years......mmmm........

    Chris P