Monday, November 7, 2011


- Riverland/South Australia
- $5-$12
- Screwcap
- 13.0%alc

Linked by ownership to Yalumba, Oxford Landing is a Riverland based brand whose oldest, original estate plantings happen to be cabernet sauvignon, with some vines dating back over 40 years. The back label of their 2010 Cabernet Shiraz heroically states; 'vegan and vegetarian friendly', causing me to wonder if the wine displays any warm-climate meaty aspects...

Meaty aspects? Hmm... maybe. But it's not that overcooked roast meat character prevalent to overhung, sun-drenched, warm-climate red grapes, rather, it's cured meat and herbs, spicy salami even, expressed in a style perhaps more typical to pinot noir (!?). Also in the nose are simple but fruity scents of cleanly ripened blackberries and raspberries, underlining a satisfying aroma devoid of harshness or heat. Conclusively, it's more interesting and composed than one might expect from a $7 red, which echoes into a palate whose silky softness and surprising suppleness immediately disperse any preconceived stereotypes, whilst providing an almost shameful satisfaction. Its primary announcement of charmingly fresh, juicy blackberries and red plums run smoothly into a finish baring a tiny twist of acid crunch at the end, where there's just enough structure to silence the astute without deterring the quaffers. It's a big win for anyone wanting change from a tenner.

ü+ Enlivened by balance, mouthfeel and freshness, Oxford Landing's 2010 Cabernet Shiraz is just a wonderful little red. It's simple but delicious and oh so gluggable. Go on... Drink to 2013.
89 points


  1. Typical commercial red for me no length or aftertaste. A bit European with its raspberry and pomegranate notes adding interest.

    It needs 1 night to settle down. I found it almost undrinkable on opening.

    For me, whites can be decent,but for reds, anything under $10 is OK at best.

  2. What really surprised me about this wine, was that my partner loved it, and she normally dismisses the cheap stuff, which can put a strain on the wallet...

    She actually went out and bought 23 (!?) of them, to give away as Xmas gifts to her staff and whoever else she sees fit. Not sure if she got me one though....

  3. Well it's all about personal taste.

    I'm lucky my tastes are similar to JH. Makes my wine hunting a damn sight easier than it would be otherwise.

  4. Chris,

    Think I've found a wine for your Mrs. It won 2 trophies and a gold (maybe more) and JH gives it a whopping 94pts. Not my style, so I wouldn't be so generous.

    It has a lot in common with the Oxford Landing above. Light bodied and easy drinking. Raspberry, pommegranite, turkish delight even. No nasties on the after taste. Not bad at all if you like that sort of thing. And cheap.

    It is (taa daaaaa!).........

    Wolf Blass Red Label Shiraz-Grenache 2010 (not sure if you've revied it already.)

    Not available at Dan's/1CL. But is on clearance at Woolworths (if you are lucky.) It costs $9.59 (10% off in any 6.)

  5. Anon,

    Cheers you very much! Always on the lookout for such things and I'll put it on me 'list'. I haven't had much luck with Wolf Blass lately, although I don't mind the Red Label fizz as a cheapie. Dad always buys it he does.. :)

    Chris P

  6. Not sure if you are taking the piss now, but seriously I go into Dan Murphy's and ask if they have a 20xx of xxxx wine and they take me to xxxx wine and say 'there you go' when it's clearly a seperate vintage to the one I was looking for (same in those snooty independent wine shops.)

    I'm always rumaging around in the boxes looking for the right vintage. So much so that my 4-year-old son has a strong grasp on the numbers 2007 to 2011, both written and spoken.

    I never EVER see anyone 'rooting' around for the right year.

    And yes, I'm a Pom.........

    BTW I've found yet another wine for your missus. Another Wolf Blass Red Label. This one was neck and neck with the $20+ wine in the 'Great Australian Belnd' competition. It has a similar taste profile to the previous discussed wine, just a fair bit fuller bodied (and hence I prefer it - just.)

    I guess I'm finding a style of commercial reds that the so called 'experts' prefer (JH, wine competition judges) and I can't say I like it that much.

    Personally, I prefer traditional full-bodied SA shirazes to these 'red fruited' lighter-styled reds. In fact, I'm not a fan of WA reds either.

    And I don't care how unfashionable RP is....

    What are your views on this (big vs elegant), Chris?

  7. Oops, this should have gone in the McWilliam's Inheritance chardonnay 2010 section.

    Too much cheap red wine, maybe :o)