Bailey’s Glenrowan 1904 Block Shiraz 2000

In the world of Australian Wine I bow to my insomniac mate Dr Edward, who I hope will comment on this post to put me straight.

I understand that Richard Bailey was an Aussie pioneer which, to an English Gent like me, roughly translates as a base criminal, or an opportunistic, albeit war weary, £10 Pom.  In fairness, the guy came from Manchester so was almost certainly a Man City fan and for that alone I respect him, crim or not.

I have never been to Van Diemen’s Land, a fact I regret.  But I did hear of one Pommie who arrived by air recently and, when asked by an Aussie customs official “Do you have a criminal record?”, could have selected a more diplomatic answer than “Sorry, no, do you still need one?”

Don\'t know what they\'re doing but they laugh a lot behind the teak doooo-or!

Bailey’s Glenrowan was not a demon although it did arrive in a van.  I think it was a President’s Cellar selection from the Sunday Times Wine Club – usually about £20 per bottle.  I presume that 1904 Block refers to the gaol, the number of prisoners, or the year Richard arrived, and not the wine’s vintage which I am taking as the latest millennium.

The wine was spicy, peppery and potent with dark fruits and damson jam, pear, and fruits of the forest.  As it warmed it started to taste of foam bananas and was none the worse for that.

I have to say that my prejudice against Aussie wines is starting to subside.  My prejudice against Aussies never existed.

One Response to “Bailey’s Glenrowan 1904 Block Shiraz 2000”

  1. edward Says:


    Always amusing. I’ve had a rather ordinary day, managing to get lost while driving in some backwater suburb, funnily enough I ended up near a prison. So thank you for providing some lightness.

    I have not tried one of these for a few years. As you know the wines come from Ned Kelly country. I always thought of them as ball breaker wines. Potent and alcohol laden, but also quite rewarding at their price point. Euphemistically some call them ‘wine for heroes’.

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