Wakefield. Promised Land Shiraz Cabernet, Australia
The blending together of two great French grapes - Cabernet Sauvignon from Bordeaux and Syrah (or Shiraz) from the Rhone Valley - would never have happened in France historically, as each region prized its own grapes above all others, and anyway, local regulations would not permit it. But Australia, free from those conventions, soon made 'Cab-Shiraz' blends one of their own trump cards, the fusion of the fruity and deep Shiraz with the structured and tannic Cabernet Sauvignon creating delicious, approachable but age-worthy wines that won many fans.
This example is offered at a very modest price by The Wine Society. The Wine Society is a mutual society that does not seek to maximise profits, so although you do have to pay a small, lifetime membership fee to own a 'share' in the Society, from then on prices are always keen and the Society buys very well indeed.
Though Wakefield wines is based in the Clare Valley, this truly excellent entry level Cabernet-Shiraz is designated 'South Australia' so fruit could come from anywhere across that larger region. It has a nose that's flooded with copious cassis, plum and ripe black fruit, but a lovely oak handling with cedary and tobacco touches. Only 13.5% alcohol helps give a fine natural balance, good freshness on the palate with enough spice and chocolate richness, but a roughening edge of auhentic tannin to give this a certain honesty. Balanced and savoury in an almost Bordeaux-like style, it offer extremely good quality at the price. Watch the video for more information, a map and food-matching suggestions. 88/100, £7.50, The Wine Society.