From a 375ml bottle.
Ooh this is nice. Ruby red and vibrant to look at. Smells of blue fruit, some spice, tarry traces and cedary oak. Dense and a little chewy, blueberries, blackcurrant, undergrowth and twiggy savoriness. Acids still prominent and tannins are edgy – profile is a little Italian in that way. Lots of stoic power and resilience packed into a balanced, elegant package here. Still has time to run in the cellar, even in 375 format. Interestingly – sealed under Diam. $75 for the 375ml bottle n release.
93 Book Club points.
From the Hoddles Creek Vineyard, at 270m altitude. Sealed with one of those synthetic cork that MacForbes uses. Interesting choice – its a seal you cant see until you take of the capsule.
Onto the wine.
Bright, hay colour. Cracked wheat and lemon nose, accompanied by a little bit of “oyster juice” and nuttiness as it warms. Immediately striking is the acid line. Riesling like, at over 8g/l. A morsel of nougat, cashew nuts, beeswax for the inner mouth perfume too. Lemon rind and pith, grapefruit and piercing acids carry this through to a long, elegant, lingering finish that ends tight and savoury. Light on its feet (and 12.5% alcohol) but there is some coiled power here that will take time to unfurl. Could be Chablis. Cellar with confidence. Really good. Really, really good. I mean it.
92 Book Club points.
Now here’s something you don’t see every day – Sagrantino.
Deep garnet. Smells of red flowers, coffee grounds, rich blackberry fruit pastilles, spicy sultana and raisins. Yes it is ripe and full flavoured, but nothing out of control. Plum skins, blueberry, boysenberry, salted licorice and almost musky and rosepetal at the front palate. Plenty of inner mouth perfume, followed by a wash of acid. Cedar oak and plenty of rich fruit tannin. Warming finish reasonable length. All presents in order, so give it some time in celalr to integrate. Nice fro a change of pace, and will be interesting over time. Remarkable for 2011, as Sagrantino ripens late and noted this doesn’t get much contact with the big thick skins this variety produces.
$40 at cellar door.
89/100 now with upside in good time – and it will need a fair bit of this. Big on the interesting factor.
From a dinner for six recently. This is a list with comments recalled a week later, no notes taken at the time.
08 Donnhoff Dellchen Grosses Gewachs Riesling: V Nice – lime rind white flowers, showing a bit of clean botrytis too. Full of life and energy.
11 Jacques Carillon Puligny Montrachet: Lots of oak masking some cashew and white peach. Struck match character. Drying finish.
76 Jayer Gilles Echezeaux: Still holding on to its fruit nicely, lots of secondary character of course.
02 Armand Rousseau Gevrey Chambertin Clos de Beze: Others didn’t like this. I found it fresh and surprisingly primary, if a bit new world in style. Approachable now with a load of dense berry fruit, let down by a fair bit of EA and VA.
05 Frederic Esmonin Estournelles St Jacques: No strong recollections
06 Lucie et August Lignier Charmes Chambertin: Liked this
12 Mongeard Mugneret Richebourg: Hugely powerful in a masculine way, and very coiled up. Needs a long sleep to become as special as it should be
06 Meo Camuzet les Chaumes: Pretty after the Richebourg. Bright and lively. Liked this a lot.
07 Comte de Vogue Chambolle Musigny: (didnt see if this was the standard or the VV?)
10 Aldo Conterno Barolo Francia: Another wine served way too young and not showing much perfume or palate. Come back in 10 years or more.
07 Schloss Lieser Niederberger Helden Auslese Goldkapsel Riesling: Peach and drenched with honey, lime pith, some Lieser tropicals and orange marmalade bot. Long and satisfying.
I think the bottle image is a magnum, but this was an normal bottle.
At 10 years of age this is maturing now, and for me is at its peak. Starting to show some kid leather and mild cedar characters joining broad plums, small black berries and white pepper. Savoury and drinkable, still with plenty of sweet fruit to make this a nice all round package. Lots of integrated length, tannins well resolved – in a very good place right now as a mature Aus Shiraz. If you have these, try one now. 92/100.
Whoa momma – a big structured wine that needs a lot of breathing, a la old school nebbiolo. Squishy red fruits, a la ripe raspberries ready for jam, a pile of fruit tannin and hessian like savouriness that often goes with TCA in my experience, but this is just savoury expression of Nerello Mascalese to accompany some glossy black berries through to the finish. All very structurally firm and taut right now, and the warm finish ( its 15.5% ABV ) kind of crashes up against all that. This really needs a long breathe to present well, and even after 24 hours this is hard going. I have liked previous vintages a lot more. About $55 retail. 84/100
These wine names are up there with the D’Arenberg ones for silliness. Quite a juxtaposition with the wines, which are serious.
This is 100% Malbec from Kangaroo Island, and appears to be a variety with promise there. Its robed in dark purple, and smells dark as well – licorice, black nikko pen, tar, boysenberry, spice, and a touch of fruitcake. Wow, there’s a lot going on here.
The palate goes the same way. Its very primary and unevolved, and even now is plush in its boysenberry plumminess. Well spiced with black pepper to the fore, a slick of licorice and melted tar, lush and assertive at the same time. All very grippy front palate tannins and a warm comfortable finish of some length.
If you must – sip this slowly with some hard cheese. If you can – put it away for at least 5 years. Very promising, nay exciting, wine. 14.0% ABV, $30 cellar door. 89 Book Club points.
I popped into Dans recently to use a gift card from Christmas, and I grabbed a bottle of this wine. A blend of 68% Grenache and 32% Cinsault. Made using approximately 35% whole bunches, and matured on lees for six months in stainless steel and large (600L to 250L) old wood prior to bottling without filtration. No wood, all good.
A bright red in colour. A lovely fruity nose, cherries, cranberries, red currants and touch of mulberries, with some lifted herbal florals. A very soft palate, gentle fruits and minimal tannins. Cherries again, with spices and some bay leaf savouriness. A clean dry finish. 13.5% abv. Screwcap. $25.65. 86 points. Drink now.
Flat cola and red fruits, a touch of stalks, spices and a weird confection reminiscent of Pascall milk bottles. Nice texture on the palate, a mouth filling broadness, cherries and a liqueur character. Tang through the mid-palate and on the finish. An interesting and enjoyable wine; though not quite what I was expecting from a Sangiovese. Sealed with cork under wax. RRP in the $20s or early $30 (from memory). 13.6% abv. 89 points.
I’m going to do this wrong way round, because the point score is the least interesting thing about this wine. 88 or 89 book club points, ‘cos this really is very good, and worth your attention for a little over twenty bucks.
It looks like some very interesting things are going on in Mclaren Vale with Italian varietals, both red and white. Coriole have been into this for more than two decades, and are making giant strides with their sangiovese in particular. But now – here come the whites. Fiano is a great example of the new things going on white could bring white wine back into the frame in the Vale. Olivers Taranga make a particularly good one.
And what an interesting wine this is. Fresh and so mediterrenean. Lemon rind and pine nut according to the winery spiel, I also get rockmelon and lime. And yet texturally this is built on texture rather than acids, with mid palate roundness followed by phenolic grip on the finish which gives it decent length and keeps things fresh.
Lovely summers day drink, only 12.5% ABV and sealed under Stelvin Luxe. Insert this wine where others might choose sauvignon blanc, stroke your chin wisely, and watch others in awe of your eclectic knowledge.