A must try wine: Grosset Nereus 2017

It would be the easiest thing in the world to tell everyone how good the latest releases from Grosset are (and, of course, they are). I doubt there is a half-serious wine lover in Australia not fully aware that the Grosset Rieslings are world-class. The Gaia and Chardonnay might sneak under the radar to a degree, but only because they can fall into the shadow of those Rieslings. 

A wine like the Nereus, however, will be a surprise to most. First, to see this wine, you’ll most likely have to be part of the Grosset members list ($50) or to pick it up at one of the restaurants which stock it (virus issues may, of course, mean that you will have to delay that avenue for a little while). 

Nereus, ‘the old man of the sea’, was the son of Pontus and Gaea (also known as Gaia – hence the link to Grosset wines) and in turn, father to the Nereids, fifty water nymphs, one of whom was mother to Achilles. It is all a bit too complicated to go much further (at least for me). However, at some stage, Nereus got the flick in the pantheon of Greek Gods and was replaced by Triton. 

Back to the wine. Clare Valley Shiraz with a small amount of Nero d‘Avola mixed in. Usually, around 3,000 to 4,000 bottles are made – 3,200 or 3,600 for this vintage, depending on whether you believe the website or the label. Most Grosset wines come from their own vineyards, but this one uses fruit from selected growers. It was barrel fermented and saw 18 months in French oak barriques, around a third of them new. 

Nero d’Avola is a Sicilian variety, medium-bodied, which seems ideally suited to Australian conditions (although that is a very broad generalisation) and works well when blended with Shiraz. 

The team at Grosset always describe this wine as being one that will age extremely well, but acknowledge that no one can be sure, as we have only seen a few vintages so far. I suspect that they are most certainly correct. 

Black cherries and plums stood out here. Rich, and yet not intrusive. Florals, chocolate, spices, dry herbs and a hint of cocoa powder. Youthful, fresh, balanced, silky tannins and with all the potential in the world. This is an exciting wine and definitely one worth seeking out. For me, 93. 

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