No longer a fad release, regardless of the “Will He… Won’t He… Drive F1 ever again?” conversation. The 3rd release of this joint label from Australian Formula 1 racing car driver Daniel Ricciardo and the St Hugo team. All the special things are still available: big bottles (1.5L Magnums, 3L Double Magnums and 6L Methuselahs), along with Le Creuset bottle openers (it’s still bloody well bottled under cork, yeah?), coasters and lounge robes (nope, didn’t know I needed one, either).
Anyways…presented in a nifty box, the “majority of grapes for the 2021 Shiraz were sourced from cooler regions of South Australia.” Spin the wheel there. Fruit parcels spent “between 12-15 days on skins in a mixture of Open fermenters
and closed statics fermenters.” Oak maturation for 14 months (25% new French oak and 75% older French oak). Regardless of Daniel’s current driving status, I’m pretty sure this label is here to stay.
St Hugo, DR3, Shiraz, South Australia, 2021
Plush and plump plum preserve, blackberry pulp, cherry jam, formic acid, clove studs, French oak spice, dried “Italian herb mix,” white pepper dust and graphite shavings. This year plays a little on the dark side of the road. Lifted and perky front to mid palate: like a harsh take off from the grid. Settles in to an intense opaque structure with firm, serious tannins. Dark and savoury, full and chary. Fruit quality is undeniable. Long chocolatey finish for pit lane happiness. Drink now or cellar with ease.
Rating: 18.75/20 (94/100)
Wine sample courtesy of St. Hugo