Tuesday, April 15, 2008

2005 d'Arenberg The Laughing Magpie Shiraz-Viognier

Well well, another middle of the week wine review causing an inconsistency with the title of this blog since you can expect the regular weekly review this Friday.

I purchased this from Costco last summer and paid $18.99. The screw-cap suited my lazy disposition very well, saving me the trouble of getting out the wine foil cutter and opener.

This particular bottling of 94% Shiraz and 6% Viognier weighed in at 15.0% alcohol, according to the label.

Aromas of smoky cedar and pepperoni, charred wood and raspberries came up from this dark-colored wine. The palate was lush, full-bodied and full of raspberry and plum fruit mixed with that cedar/smoke component. Like the other wines of this genre, it was not shy at all. Viscous, extracted and bold are good ways to describe its character. The alcohol was masked by the flavors but I could feel it after drinking just a little bit.

The wine followed a curve of improving with air over the first hour or so, and then it started to decline after 90 minutes with the fruit getting a little sourish.

It was similar to the Marquis Philips Shiraz and Sarah's Blend, and the Kangarilla Road bottlings that were the most recent Australian Shiraz I've had, and was the most expensive of the four. I'd say the others were a tad better than this one, too. I wouldn't buy this again; it's not distinctive enough and not worth the money compared to what you could get for less.

The matching YouTube video expresses how I feel about this wine. If you can't see the video screen below, please click here.

Some comments: I like the movie, the song, and think Irene Cara has a great voice. But if you were around back when the movie came out (1980) you may remember that the theme song was played to death. I think she even performed it three times on one show and later, some comedy show spoofed it (SNL, maybe?) by doing a song called "Same" as in "everything sounds the same." And what's with that outfit Ms. Cara is wearing in the video? A little gaudy, would you say? I bet she hated every moment of it! And that is like the bottle of wine reviewed today.

That said, here's the link to the DVD: Fame - The Movie


Anonymous said...

Wow, I would have guessed you might like this wine. I find it more complex than the Sarah's Blend or the Marquis Philips Shiraz, and a little bit more on the edge of old world/new world rather than full throttle new world.

And you got a REALLY good deal. This wine is normally in the $20s, and if you'd paid that, it would have made for some pretty bad QPR!

MonkuWino said...

I did like it, especially the aromas, but because it didn't seem much different to me than the other mentioned wines that cost a lot less, and it sort of fell apart in the glass after a while, I couldn't really give it two thumbs up. While I wouldn't buy it again, I wouldn't refuse to drink it, either..