2016 Coriole "Sparta" Syrah McLaren Vale

SKU #1432679 94 points James Halliday

 It barely sees any new oak but it still feels polished and perfect, its flavours of blackberry, peppercorn and plum sweeping irresistibly through the palate. Tannin is deceptive; it's assertive but buried in the dark lusciousness of the fruit. This is a prime candidate to be bought in volume.  (9/2018)

93 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 From a north-facing vineyard, the 2016 Sparta Shiraz is a slightly richer and darker-fruited wine than Coriole typically produces. I love the blackberry and hickory notes, which are framed by subtle oak and supple tannins. This mouth-filling wine features ample depth and richness, extending through a long, silky-textured yet mouthwatering finish. (JC)  (1/2019)


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Price: $14.99
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By: Diana Turk | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 10/30/2019 | Send Email
This is a sophisticated little Syrah (more commonly known in Oz as Shiraz), with hits of herbs on the nose, plenty of balanced blackberry fruit and baking spice through the palate, and a super dry finish. Dark and almost brooding, but still light enough to be a crowd pleaser, "Sparta" is an exceptional wine for the price.

By: Kirk Walker | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 10/22/2019 | Send Email
What a great nose. It is not what I would have expected given the wines price point. It is a charmer. Bright, lifted aromatics of dark fruits and berries with just a suggestion of spice. The palate is round and generous without being heavy or falling into the trap of Australia preconceptions. Easy polished tannins and just a hint of oak and spice. Easy without being shameless, this is a perfect weekday red, it will go with just about everything and nothing.

By: Thomas Smith | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 10/16/2019 | Send Email
Look at any top-ten producer list from McLaren Vale and you’ll always see Coriole. The Lloyd family purchased their estate vineyards in 1967, which date back to their original planting in 1917. The Sparta Shiraz is sourced from the Galaxidia vineyard which was planted just outside the nearby town of Sparta in 1998. The Sparta Shiraz is absolutely black fruited. In a lot of ways it reads closer to Northern Rhone Syrah than South Australian Shiraz. Bone dry with dark, wild fruit, expressing notes of blackberries and cassis. Gorgeous all-spice and clove on the nose with exceptional balance. This is the best bang-for-your-buck wine in the whole store.

By: Gary Westby | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 8/22/2019 | Send Email
The Coriole line is the most exciting wine that I have tasted from Australia in more than a decade. The Sparta especially so- this sub $15 Syrah is one of the best value red wines in the store from anywhere. Not only is it rich, full bodied and spicy as I would expect, but it also has quite nice balance and refreshment. If you like big reds that are a value, this is not to be missed.
Top Value!

Additional Information:

Varietal:

Shiraz/Syrah

- One of France's noblest black grape varieties, Syrah is known for its intense and distinctive perfume reminiscent of briar fruit, tar, spice and black pepper and its firm structure. One of few black grape varietals frequently vinified on its own, the best examples of Syrah come from the Northern Rhône, particularly Hermitage, but also Côte-Rôtie, Cornas, Crozes-Hermitage and St-Joseph. These wines are very astringent in their youth, though some Crozes-Hermitage and St-Joseph can be enjoyed young, relatively speaking. Given the requisite patience, though, these wines can reveal amazing complexity and secondary fruit characteristics like plum and blackcurrant as well as subtle hints of smoke and flowers. In the Southern Rhône, Syrah is used to add structure and complexity to wines dominated by Grenache and complemented by Mourvèdre, like the more immediately drinkable Côte du Rhônes, as well as the long-lived wines of Châteauneuf-du-Pape. In recent years, plantings of Syrah have spread throughout the Languedoc-Roussillon where it is produced on its own or blended with other varietals. Outside of France, the most important Syrah growing country is easily Australia, where it is called Shiraz. Quality levels here depend greatly on yields and geography, and the wines range from bold, fruity and easy-drinking to intense and ageable, like the famed Penfolds Grange. Often bottled on its own, in Australia Syrah is also can be blended with Grenache and Mourvèdre, as in the Southern Rhône, and is increasingly combined with Cabernet Sauvignon. Syrah has also been steadily increasing in popularity in California, thanks to a group of advocates called the Rhône Rangers. Its most successful iterations come from the Central and Sonoma Coasts, where winemakers are pushing boundaries and creating some incredible wines. In recent years Syrah has also found a number of proponents in Washington State, which is definitely a region to watch for this variety.
Country:

Australia

- While it is true that the greatest strides in Australian winemaking have come in the last 30 years or so, commercial viticulture began as early as the 1820s and has developed uninterrupted ever since. The majority of the great wine regions are in the southeastern area of the continent, including Barossa Valley, Clare Valley, McLaren Vale, and Coonawarra in South Australia; Yarra Yarra Valley and Pyrenees in Victoria; and the Upper and Lower Hunter Valleys in New South Wales. Many of the wines from Southeastern Australia are based on Shiraz or Cabernet Sauvignon and various blends including Grenache and Mourvedre. In Western Australia, along the Margaret River, great strides are being made with Pinot Noir as well as Bordeaux-styled reds. There are also many world-class releases of Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc from the land Down Under, where Riesling also enjoys international acclaim. While many equate Aussie wines with “value,” there are more than a few extremely rare and pricey options, which never fail to earn the highest ratings from wine publications and critics throughout the world.
Sub-Region:

South Australia

Specific Appellation:

McLaren Vale