Magpie Estate is Noel's Australian joint venture with wine-maker Rolf Binder, based in the Barossa Valley, and the two have been making wines together for over a decade now.
The wines are indeed, in a sense, museum pieces, as the vintages on show that night are long since sold out , so these were something rather special - however, more recent vintages of the same wines are available from Noel's shop.
By contrast, the 2001 was a quite different and much more impressive wine - less fruit-driven, it was denser and more restrained, with great texture, and felt really well-made.
The notes on Noel's website for the 2001 say that the grapes come "from 3 vineyard sources and are aged in around 40% new oak, of which 80% was American 20% French oak ... We blended in c5% Grenache and this has given the wine a mid-palate lift."
As Noel later explained, 2003 had been a much more difficult vintage than 2001 with the resulting wine being quite different.
This earlier vintage - with a few more years in bottle and opened several hours earlier in the evening - was even more impressive with good ripe fruit acidity, aromas of pencil shavings and some toasty oak.
Magpie Estate 'The Sack', Shiraz, 2001, Australia, Barossa Valley
Magpie Estate 'The Sack', Shiraz, 2003, Australia, Barossa Valley
Magpie Estate 'The Call Bag', Mourvedre-Grenache, 2004, Australia, Barossa Valley
Noel Young Wines - http://www.nywines.co.uk/
Magpie Estate - http://www.rolfbinder.com/index.php?cmi=24
Magpie Estate (new website under development) - http://www.magpieestate.com/