Seville Estate Pinot Noir 2012

Seville Estate Pinot Noir 2012

13.0% abv. Screwcap. RRP in the high $20s. On the nose, cherries and cranberries, spices with some confection but not much complexity. The palate shows soft fruits, earthy and a bit twiggy, softly candied. Very lightly bodied and tannined, but it does build some weight with time, getting a fuller mouthfeel and some glossiness. Drink now. 85 points.

Posted in $20 to $50, Australia, Notes, Pinot Noir, Price, Varietal/Style, Wine, Yarra Valley | 1 Comment

2012 Jamsheed Great Western Syrah

2012-jamsheed-great-western-syrah-garden-gully_1024x1024Syrah from Great Western in Victoria.  I used to have a bit of a thing for it, via the Seppelt St Peters version.  but once I got an insight into what Southcorp / Treasury were doing to the brand, I though it was time to move on and support the little guys worth supporting.  I tried an earlier vintage of this a few years ago and quite liked it.

This one feels a lot riper – a swish of blackberry jam nose.  All the fruit is correct – “small berries with thick skins” – dense and chewy flavours here.  Joined by brown spice, then some fairly precise doses of ripeness related flavours – black olive, prune, and fruitcake richness on the palate with a touch of menthol.  Plenty of length, and just the right amount of tannin – My guess is drink this over the next 7 years or so.

This *sounds* like a wine I wouldn’t like – and it is out my my style groove – but it is very well made and will have its fans – deservedly so.  90/100 from me.

Posted in $20 to $50, Australia, Great Western, Notes, Shiraz, Wine | Leave a comment

1998 Dr Loosen Urziger Wurzgarten Riesling Auslese

dr_loosen_rziger_wrzgarten_auslese_riesling2011At the beginning of my love affair with Mosel Riesling, I managed to pick up some aged gems out of the cellar of Paul DeBurgh Day. Including this, which has survived 7 years in my own cellar.  I’ve had other bottles of this, which have been pleasant without being striking, and this is very much in that mould.  Showing its extra 7 years now with petroleum jelly on both nose and palate.  other than that it has a lot in common with all the other ones I’ve opened – fairly simple lemon lime fruit, some passionfruit ripeness about it, but none of the spice that the Wurzgarten is famous for.

Nice enough but there are other makers way ahead of this.  85/100.

Posted in $50 to $100, Germany, Notes, Riesling, Wine | Leave a comment

Four Pillars Gunpowder Proof Gin

four-pillars_navy-strength_very-lrThe third product from the Yarra Valley based Four Pillars, and what a cracking release!  Not for the faint hearted at 58.8% alcohol, nor for the thin-of-wallet at about $100 delivered to you.

And its not faint of flavour either – the Byron Bay finger limes  added to this give it a real citric lift and a blast of freshness, the turmeric adds body, and there’s also a fresh green nuance that isn’t in the rare dry gin.  The for pillars website nominates dill and cucumber and that’s pretty much spot on.

Brilliantly refreshing, smoothly flavoured, and (as you’d expect), explosive with alcoholic lift.  Brilliant spirit.  Special occasions stuff, and while its the perfect G&T spirit, its good enough to drink neat.

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

2012 Mullineux Swartland White

Looking for something to go with a roast chicken that’s a little out of left field?  Tired of Chardonnay and even Beaujolais as a match.  Well look no further.

mullineux76% Chenin Blanc, 16% Clairette Blanche, 8% Viognier, from Swartland in South Africa.  This is about citrus rind, smoke and spice, and its also about balance and length, and its also about texture.  Well, its about quite a lot, with flavours just right, weight just right, alcohol just right.  Hard to tell what wood treatment it mgiht have seen, as the smokiness, which i tihnk is a Clairette Blanche thing, hides all that, but the structure speaks of little wood.  Brilliant food wine, will work with a lot of white meat dishes and also fresh leafy salads.  Love it.  91/100

Posted in $20 to $50, Chenin Blanc, Notes, Wine | 1 Comment

2013 Stargazer Pinot Noir

Stargazer-BottleI wanted to like this more.  I really did. Tasmania should be making great wine, but I’m underwhelmed almost every time.  Seeing Sam Connew set up shop down there was something of a beacon of hope.

The fruit for this is from the Huon Valley south of Hobart.  It expresses as pure, clean red and black cherries dusted with brown spices, and the palate is glossy and complete, and balanced well with nothing sticking out.  I get a sense of beautiful fruit, and a winemaker who knows not to get in the way.

However there is a confected hint on the front palate which is distracting and detracting.  I’ll recheck in 24 hours, but at this point 88/100.  oodles of potential if the confection dissipates.

24 hours later:  the confection is gone, replaced by a delicate, peppery spice.  Now, this tastes like a young pinot should, and the fruit purity shows much better. It’s balanced and has enough interest to cellar – leave it alone a few years for best results.  89+/100 now

Posted in $20 to $50, Australia, Notes, Pinot Noir, Tasmania, Wine | 4 Comments

2011 Peter Lauer Fass 11 “Schonfels” Riesling

Fass 11 S-Fels-500x500From the Saar, in Germany, and a new name for most Australian drinkers.  This weighs in at 13% alcohol, and would be described and Auslese Feinherb.  Or in English, its made from ripe fruit, and fermented to be just off dry.

And it shows this choice of winemaking very nicely, with the ripeness apparent in gingery, spicy lychees & limes with a hint of pineapple skin, presented in a light, airy fashion that doesn’t always come with this kind of ripeness.  Lovely balance of flavours against ripe acids and textural phenolics.  Excellent choice with food.  And it was still going strong after being open for 8 days!  91/100.

Posted in $50 to $100, Germany, Notes, Riesling, Wine | Leave a comment

Miscellany 11

IMG_0150AFL Grand Final drinkies!  Just posting the lost for now, I’ll add notes and impressions in due course

2013 Mac Forbes EB08 Methode Ancestrale:  A curio made from a fruit salad of varieties.  Methode Ancestrale basically is Methode Champenoise with the disgorgement stage deleted – the wine is bottled with yeast, lees and some RS remaining and secondary ferment takes place in bottle.  This is interesting, full of winery smells and skinsy smells and tastes too.  But seems to finish short – something  to flesh this out would have helped.

Rockford Black Shiraz, 2010 Disgorgement:  A bit mushroomy, and tasted older than it is.  Nice enough, and better fro being lighter on the liqueur in this disgorgement just a touch unexpected.

2011 Jean Chartron St Aubin Murgers  les Dents de Chien:  Buttery, full and rounded.  Not a vineyard I know anything about, but I’m told this is true to type for both vineyard and vintage.

1992 Taltarni Cabernet Sauvignon (not pictured):  Served blind we were asked to guess vintage, and we mostly went for mid 70s.  yes its 22 years old, but it still tasted older.  Disticntly Cabernet though.

2010 Vietti Castiglione Barolo:  Love the profile of these Vietti’s and they seem to have done very nicely in 2010.  Drive and energy in the acids and tannins, and both richness and restraint in the small berried fruit.

2005 Vietti Lazzarito Barolo:  And this is in a whole other place compared to the wine before.  Wow.  Balance and poise, red fruits are beginning to integrate, and nothing sticks out.

2005 Amiot Servelle Chambolle Musigny les Charmes:  Not paying attention by now…

2009 Georges Mugneret Gibourg Chambolle Musigny les Feusselottes: …but I remember liking this a lot more than the Amiot Servelle, which seemed indistinct and undistiguished.

2004 Solaia: And then this happened.  i could tell it was a lovely Cabernet, but opening this during the fourth quarter of a grand final was not a good idea.

2009 Chateau Rieussec:  and then there was this lovely sauternes.  Some coiled up orange marmalade and honeycomb power here,  this is going to blossom into something larger than life in a few years time.

Posted in $50 to $100, Australia, Barossa Valley, Bordeaux, Burgundy, Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay, France, Italy, Nebbiolo, Notes, over $100, Piedmont, Pinot Noir, Price, Pyrenees, Shiraz, Sparkling, Tuscany, Wine | Leave a comment

2012 Pooley Late Harvest Riesling

I thought I had bought the 2013’s but this is a 2012.  2012_Pooley_LHR  I also wish this had a better name than “late harvest”, which fro me conjured up images of some of the sweet muck that was going around in the 70s, which in every way is 40 years apart from this wine.

87g/l residual sugar, 10.4% alcohol, puts it in the middle ground between table wine and dessert wine.  Paired with a pork belly roast, it does the first of those two jobs admirably with flavours to match and acid to cut through the rich fattiness of the pork.  Its very well detailed – white flowers on the nose, pineapple and passionfruit on first sip, nuanced with honey, lime rind, guava, a slatey touch of sulphur and a dusting of cinnamon.  Clean and light on its feet, juicy and delicious, very slurpable and at the same time intellectually stimulating.  Would sit well in a global lineup of this style.  91/100.

Posted in $20 to $50, Australia, Coal River Valley, Notes, Riesling, Wine | Leave a comment

2011 Azienda Agricola Cos Cerasuolo di Vittoria

cecos11_anv800A blend of Nero D’Avola and Frappato from Sicily, presented in a squat, heavy, dark glass bottle.   This is the version aged in steel, not the amphora one, which is denoted “pithos”.

The pink tinged vibrant red says this should be crackling with youthful energy, but this goes somewhere different on the palate – we are well and truly in savouryland.  Smells of cracked wheat, and a grassy meadow with a strawberry and blackberry bush at the other end.  The palate is similarly languid and elegant, with dry spice and softly spoken fruit tannins joining in, and some slightly angular acids on a back palate.  After 24 hours the fruity components come up a bit.  Needs food – antipasti would do.  Just medium weight, and 13% ABV.  Pleasant and well made, just doesn’t float my boat and doesn’t stand out. Would need more intensity and more fruit presence to score higher.  85/100

Posted in $20 to $50, Italy, Notes, Sicily, Wine | Leave a comment