2012 Lethbridge Pinot Noir

LethbridgePinotNoir Ooh me likely.  Earthy, red clay.  A sombre, serious looking garnet colour, and truffley earth and plum nose.  Palate is beautifully structured, earth again, raspberry, plum with an oh so delicate waft of peppery, asian spices.  Brooding, sous bois, mossy undergrowth too.  Nicely structured, grippy albeit fine tannins.

Drunk at the same time as the 2013 Holm Oak Wizard (also reviewed here) – others preferred the Holm Oak, I preferred this,  but your mileage may vary.

89+ Book Club Points

Posted in $20 to $50, Australia, Geelong, Notes, Pinot Noir, Price, Wine | Leave a comment

2013 Holm Oak The Wizard Pinot Noir

holm_oak_wizard_pinot_noirTamar Valley, Tasmania.  Turns to the retailer who sold this to me ended up with stock somewhat by accident.  But lets call it serendipity, as this isn’t bad at all.

Strawberry red to pink.  Smells liked cinnamon spiced cherries.  Warm and comforting, with a nice lift to it.  Red cherry, strawberry and cream, sous bois elements, touch of oak char maybe, but this is primarily about concentrated sweet red fruit, and it doesnt show the new oak it was given. Couched in ample fine tannins, albeit a little warm on the finish.  Lovely new world style.  Just either side of $50 – Drink now to 2020.

89 Book Club Points.


Posted in $50 to $100, Australia, Notes, Pinot Noir, Tamar Valley, Wine | 2 Comments

Drinking from the auction pile, part 2

Louis Jadot Vosne Romanee 2004: definite wrongness here, red fruits with a strong whiff of the pyrazines. Body is okay, but the nose is distracting. Stalk and greenness. 82 BCP.

Louis Jadot Vosne Romanee “Les Suchots” 1er cru 2004: more wrongness here, but slightly less wrong; again red fruits with a strong whiff of the pyrazines. Better body, but all the badness of the vintage are evident here. Lester Ross can believe what he likes. 83 BCP

Domaine Denis Mortet Gevrey-Chambertin 2003: a mixed bag: confection, reduction, liquorice all-sorts, baked fruits, dry earth, very weird. Relatively okay on the palate, broad red fruits and woody spice. Hoping this is the last bottle. 84 BCP.

Domaine Faiveley Latricieres-Chambertin 2004: some wrongness, slightly cleaner and more focused fruit, but swathed in green beans and stalks. Decent length. 84 BCP

Posted in Uncategorized | 3 Comments

2012 Sadie Family Skurfberg Chenin Blanc

314587Wow, big ripe wine.

Has some color to it, including maybe some pink flecks.  Floral and almost musky, this shows a lot of orange rind and pith, gingery spice too.  Its rich and mouthfilling, with more ripe elements like honeydew flickering in and out, leaving an almost sweet impression – but that could be the 14.5% ABV.  Acids have a slight almond bitters  tang on the finish.  Very interesting and well made.

89 book club points.

Posted in $50 to $100, Chenin Blanc, Notes, South Africa, Wine | Leave a comment

No 3 London Dry Gin

Berry Bros and Rudd – 3 St James Street.  Hence the name. no3-london-dry-gin-front-hires_3Despite it being distilled in the Netherlands.

Just six botanicals here.  Juniper, Orange peel, grapefruit peel, angelica root, coriander and cardamom.  And they present in precisely that order.  This is clearly a juniper first version, and the bitter edge this gives continues right through the palate.  Simple?  Maybe, but wow, does this present nicely.  Every botanical rings as clear as a bell, right through to the finish where juniper reappears.  The 46% ABV gives an extraordinary lift.  Brilliant gin.  New house favourite.

About $80 – seek it out.

Posted in $50 to $100, Gin, Notes | Leave a comment

Vietti Barbera d’Alba Scarrone Vigna Vecchia 2010

Vietti Barbera d’Alba Scarrone Vigna Vecchia 2010

Ah Grasshopper; another Scarrone VV from Vietti. The board of the Brisbane Book Club have a fondness for this wine, and this is my reward for putting a (small) dent in the auction pile.

A super lovely nose, very complex, cola and florals, cherries and olives, minerals and earth. Savouriness on the palate, initially dominated by minerals, with ripe cherry fruits, mulberries and raspberries. Softened with time. Textured, with great length. Probably needs a couple more years.

Sealed under cork. 14.5% abv. Drink 2017+. 93 BCP.

Posted in $50 to $100, Barbera, Italy, Notes, Piedmont, Price, Varietal/Style, Wine | 2 Comments

2000 Majella Malleea

Its an Anzac Day thing in our house to drink something typically Australian.  Some years MajellaMalleeathat’s a sparkling shiraz, other years its a Cabernet Shiraz blend.  And so this bottle was produced.

2000 was generally regarded as a poor vintage across SA, but Coonawarra fared better than most.  Majella’s flagship wine – a Cabernet Shiraz blend – performed quite well, and I liked this wine rather a lot last time I tasted it in 2011.

And now at 15 years of age, not a lot has changed.  Cabernet mintiness, shiraz chocolate and black olives, and a range of black berry spectrum fruit that are remarkably primary for this age.  Tannins have resolved a little, and there is some cigar box showing now. The overall impression is richness of sweet fruit (and comfortingly this is 13.5% ABV), rather than just hang time and raisiny  ripeness.  However there is an acid line is here which is strong enough to be  disconcerting and throw the wine out of balance.  What a shame.  82 Book Club Points.

Posted in $50 to $100, Australia, Cabernet Sauvignon, Coonawarra, Notes, Shiraz, Wine | 1 Comment

2012 Circe Hillcrest Road Vineyard Chardonnay

2011_Circe_Hillcrest_Chardonnay__66513.1405356576.386.513From the Red Hill part of the Mornington Peninsula. Made by Dan Buckle.

Has a little colour to it.  Quiet nose, perhaps too cold at this  point, and that shows as the palate evovles over time.  Early, its also a quiet affair, cracked wheat, almond meal, touches of orange citrus.  With warms, more cumquat and oak spice.  This is relatively loose knit and open textured right now, and remains very nicely balanced.  Lovely approachable wine in a rounded new world style, this will match a lot of foods.  Very good – would buy again to sip over the next few years. 90/100.

Posted in $20 to $50, Australia, Chardonnay, Mornington Peninsula, Notes, Wine | Leave a comment

Drinking from the auction pile, part 1

These were consigned to the auction pile, for various reasons, but I got lazy and hadn’t bothered to send them off. The returns can be very low, so it was decided that they’d be consumed instead:

Jean-Claude Boisset Savigny-les-Beaune “La Dominode” 1er cru 2004: remarkably, not too bad. Certainly has a bit of the ladybug character, and a bit broad across the palate, but easy drinking. 82 BCP.

Louis Jadot Gevrey-Chambertin “Clos St. Jacques” 1er cru 2004: based on the experiences of the previous bottle, this was tried with similar lack of complete failure. Of course, it would look awful in a vertical, but stand-alone it was okay. 84 BCP

Seppelt “Dorrien” Cabernet Sauvignon 1996: colour and palate belies its age. Very pleasant, and un-Cabernety; more Barossa dry red (which is fine by me). 87 BCP

Vega Sicilia Alion Ribera del Duero 2003: baked and dark, black tea and molasses, inky fruits. 83 BCP.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

2013 Shaw and Smith M3 Chardonnay

shaw_smith_m3_chardonnay_nvPale straw.  Pineapple skin & honeydew.  Seems to have been picked early, or at least low ripeness (only 12.5% alcohol).  Becomes more friendly with a bit of airtime and warming to room temperature – orange citrus, some pink grapefruit, almond nougat.  Creamy texture, some nice phenolic grip on the cheeks, flavours and acids balance out well.  Needs time to unfurl a bit more – leave in the cellar for two years.  A nice, caressing, elegant wine that doesn’t scream for attention just yet.  88 Book Club points, room to add point or two in a few years.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment