The Rufus Stone marks the spot where Sir Walter Tyrrell (accidentally) killed King William II of England with an arrow intended for a deer. King Billy Jr was fat and red. His nickname was Rufus. Hence the eponymous stone.
The Tyrrells are understandably proud of great great great grand-daddy Walter for knocking off old King Fanta Pants. And to honour the good man, they sell two very commendable Shirazes under the Rufus Stone label – one from Heathcote, one from McLaren Vale. Both are good, but the Heathcote is better.
In the glass, it’s as dark as a struck match and rimmed by a halo of redness that glows like a slapped ass.
It smells of ripe, spicy fruit and musky perfume. But, as it always should be, it’s the drinking that provides the highpoint.
It’s rich and flavoursome, but nicely rounded and balanced. Soft and velvety. Big enough to wash down a steak, but light enough to be quaffed mid-week on the couch if the mood takes you.
It’s good fun drinking and, quite simply, stunningly good quality wine for the price. At just over $10 a bottle, I’m all over this like Matt Dunning on a half-price pie.
The RRP is actually $24, but a couple of stores (including Uncle Dan's) are having a terrific sale on this at the moment. Six bottles at under $12 each, and they’ll throw in a free magnum. VCs have the same deal with the magnum, but you’ll pay the 50% "classy" tax if you shop there. Either way, it's cheap - and exceptionally good value.
As much fun as tickling a midget in Finland. And no, that’s not a euphemism - it’s a real sport.
Drink with: a thick rib-eye
Image from tyrrells.com.au