The Old Bloke & The Three Young Blondes Shiraz Roussanne Viognier Marsanne 2011
The Story Behind The Name
The Old Bloke is a Shiraz dominant blend with Roussanne, Viognier and Marsanne, three white Rhone varieties that d'Arenberg planted in McLaren Vale in the 1990's. These 'young blondes' add fragrance, spice and length to the 'old bloke', which is sourced from d'Arenberg's oldest Shiraz vines. Some might joke that the old bloke is Chester, and the three young blondes are his daughters, the fifth generation who will carry on the d'Arenberg tradition. Each of these title characters are represented on the label as a cut out silhouette. Much like the wine itself, the four personalities are 'blended' together by being overlayed one on top of the other, each creating a window to the next and achieving an effect of tactility and depth.
A mix of gnarly, old Shiraz partnered with youthful, exotic and fragrant white varieties. The Shiraz offers a nose brimming with dark, earthen fruits, woody spices and rich blackberry aromas. Viognier adds fragrance in the form of apricot, ginger and florals, Roussanne delivers an exotic, dried almond and papaya note, and the Marsanne contributes pistachio and yellow stonefruit. The palate is generous, with layers of fruit characters that ebb and flow through the entire length. The tannin structure is unique, thanks to the mingling of red and white phenolics. The rustic, chunky, mid palate Shiraz tannins are tempered by the lusciousness of the white varieties, the finish enhanced by the addition of fragrant, flowery tannins, mainly on account of the Viognier and more nutty, walnut skin texture, from the Roussanne. A complex and alluring wine that evolves in the glass. So much individual character and much to take in, but somehow we are left with a sense of harmony between the old bloke and the three young blondes.