2008 Tyrrell’s Wines Semillon Vat 1 Hunter Valley 


These days, as I am focusing on fewer regions, I taste less widely than when I started out. However, I feel it is important to take my palate out on “away days” and taste something different. I have always loved Sémillon from the Hunter Valley. The benchmark remains Tyrrell’s Wines. I recently had a chance to taste a “mature” example of their famous Vat 1. I use quotation marks because it tasted anything but!

The 2008 Sémillon Vat 1 Hunter Valley comes from the oldest blocks that date back to 1923, while this cuvée debuted back in 1963. It has a very elegant and pure bouquet with enticing melon, Nashi pear and gooseberry scents. The 2008 is almost ferociously youthful, so you would think it was just four or five years old. The palate is very well balanced with a live-wire entry: tangy gooseberry and kiwi fruit, sharp and zingy acidity and a tensile, lemon zest infused finish. There is a subtle bell pepper note on the aftertaste, plus a hint of white asparagus, completing an impressive, complex Sémillon that is only on its opening pages. A marvel. 92/Drink 2028-2050.

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