Thursday, 30 August 2012

Pizzini Sangiovese 2009 + Asian style pork

Sangiovese is one of the most versatile varieties as it can handle light to heavier dishes, even if they have a bit of spice thrown in.

Asian style pork

1 k pork tenderloin
1/3 cup light soy sauce
¼ cup sesame oil
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
1/8 cup brown sugar
3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
3 spring onions, chopped
1 teaspoon fish sauce
1 teaspoon roasted fish paste
1 ½ tablespoons chilli flakes
1 squeeze lime juice

Combine all ingredients, except pork, in a large bowl. Place pork in a shallow dish and cover all sides with marinade. Leave in fridge over night.

Heat oven to 230 degrees Celsius and then place pork in oven wrapped in foil for 25 to 30 minutes.  Once cooked remove from oven and let it stand for 5 minutes before serving with rice and Asian style vegies.

Pizzini Sangiovese 2009

This wine smells dark and brooding but it is the colour that gives it away as it is a little darker than I would expect.  On the palate there is a beautiful flavour of plum skin rolled in dirt with a touch of cherry balm thrown in. The entry to the wine is the most fascinating part of the wine as there is a lifted spirit component that comes to fore from the mid-palate on.  The alcohol warmth might be a result from the extreme weather condition that the King Valley experienced during that year. Whilst the alcohol wins out in the end, it is the tannins that take hold of my tongue wrestling with them in delight.

Alcohol: 13.8%
Price: $22
Rated: 85
Drink: Now – 2015

Yabby Lake Block 2 & 6 Pinot Noir 2010

I have never had a wine from Yabby Lake but as the project had been handled with such care and attention from the beginning, it was exciting to see how these wines looked. If these two wines are anything to go by everyone should watch out.

Yabby Lake Block 6 Pinot Noir 2010

Oak in Pinot is not my thing but the oak here is so alluring that I can easily put my pre-conceptions behind me.  I think they have laid on the oak a bit thicker than the Block 2, as this wine has some intense fruit power sleeping under the oak. You still get the cherry fruit with roast cumin that you normally get from this region but it seems like they have inserted a v8 engine into the bottle. Leave it alone or bite the bullet and get on board.

Alcohol: 14%
Price: $90
Rated: 90
Drink: 2014 +

Yabby Lake Block 2 Pinot Noir 2010

Could someone find a key as this wine is locked up so tight it is scary. What it did show over the time that I watched it was moments of smoky cranberries and dried herbs dancing with cherry tarts and Indian spices.  I’m terrified of this wine as I think that it will rock the house down once the wine opens out a bit. It feels like this wine was put together with a surgeon’s scalpel as there is nothing out of place at all but it just feels not ready to rumble. Could it be recovering after getting out of surgery?

Alcohol: 14%
Price: $90
Rated: 91 +
Drink 2015 and beyond

Wednesday, 29 August 2012

Yalumba Galway Vintage Traditional Shiraz 2011

The 2011 wines from the Barossa taste, mainly nothing like you would expect. The wine below was light bodied with red fruit flavours and a hint of tannin.

Yalumba Galway Vintage Traditional Shiraz 2011

The wine started with a touch of spice and some dark and morello cherries so I thought we were off to a good start.  While the length of the palate was average to begin with I thought, as with most other wines, that as the bottle was open the length and breadth of the wine would improve but alas something else occurred. From about the one hour open mark the mid-palate started to flatten out and the nice light flavours started to transform into a heap of ugliness.  In fact the palate ended up tasting of horse hair and wet peat from the Scottish highlands.  I would be drinking this one soon as the initial flavours are attractive, whilst the flavours that follow are not so nice.

Alcohol: 13.5%
Price: $16
Rated: 80
Drink: by the end of 2012

BK Wines One Ball Chardonnay 2011

The fruit for this One Ball Chardonnay comes from Kenton Valley which is located in between Gumeracha and Lobethal. It is cool in this area but not as cold as the Piccadilly Valley. What this area is renowned for is cherries and strawberries but it is the golf course that I drive past once ever week that is most surprising.  It is the sort of course that your legs will get a huge workout even if you stick to the fairways. What this course does possess is crisp air and lush green vista's.

BK Wines One Ball Chardonnay 2011

For a wine that is 12.5% alcohol this sure does pack a punch with flavours of hazelnut infused creme and ripe melon. There is a thickness through the mid-palate from the oak treatment which is still needing a bit of time to fully integrate but it should look good with a year or three in a cave. The length of this wine is beautiful and I could see this working really well as a first pour as my guests arrive.

Alcohol: 12.5%
Price: $27 which is brilliant value
Rated: 87
Drink: 2015 - 2021

Saturday, 25 August 2012

Tyrrell’s Brokenback Shiraz 2010

Last year Tyrrell’s explained that they would not release their four acres Shiraz but would declassify it into the below wine.  The question that crosses my mind is, will this change the feel of the high quality wines that are normally released from this label? Yes it does as the polished oak that I normally get from a young version of the Brokenback is already integrated in the 2010 release.

Tyrrell’s Brokenback Shiraz 2010

In 2010, the weather conditions have produced a medium to light bodied funky wine that expresses itself like a 1st grader.  You remember when you were young and you were able to convey yourself in any form in art. Finger painting? Yes, I would love to. Well, what about paper mache? Count me in! This wine sits beautifully as an outlet for the creative mind as it happily pushes the boundaries between fragrance and spiciness in a polished yet dirty profile.

Alcohol: 12.9%
Price: $16
Rated: 88
Drink: Now or later

Friday, 24 August 2012

1st Drop Wines The Cream 2009

Matt Gant established 1st Drop wines in 2005 which now turns out 8000 cases of high quality booze. Matt must have a sense of humour as you can buy a 1st drop G-string from their web site if you feel like it would add to the experience. Matt takes his wine packaging very seriously as each label is tailored to its wine demographic. Take this wine for example. Serious cash is needed to buy a bottle of this wine and the packaging is elegant and understated which is perfectly matched to the type of buyer that would be forking out the cash.

1st Drop Wines The Cream 2009

Oh boy oh boy does this wine have a lot going but I’ll split it into the positives and negatives. For the positives, you have flavour galore with a seamless transition from each flavour, balanced by oak derived texture which supports the whole package. The robust flavours of boiled blackberries, bitter chocolate, red skins and raspberries are only eclipsed by a soft and cuddly tactile experience. These fruitilicious moments are attached to light yet impacting tannins and a refreshing amount of acidity.  For the negative there is a bit of alcohol heat on the back palate and some of the flavours are a little too ripe but for a 2009 wine this is a huge success. 

Alcohol: 14.5%
Price: $100
Rated: 92 +
Drink: 2014 - 2024

Thursday, 23 August 2012

Provenance Golden Plains Pinot Noir 2011

Provenance produce a wide array of single vineyard wines but this wine in a blend of all the components that they think aren’t up to the standard.

Provenance Golden Plains Pinot Noir 2011

So easy to drink, this wine is but what is lacks in palate weight it makes up for in down right drinkability. This wine has mouthfeel and a tannin structure with a slight herbal edge that adds to the fun of the wine. The flavours of cherry stones, stalky spice and the smell of a Christmas cake slowly crawl up my tongue.  It is inviting and cerebral at the same time as I sit in a large chair with a Reidel O Pinot Glass in hand, while i'm trying to listen to the story that this wine is whispering at me. This wine is for hardcore Pinot lovers as the stalkiness could put off the Barossa barons but if you are after some loving Pinot style, get you hands around a bottle of this.

Alcohol: 12.5%
Price: $30
Rated: 87
Drink: Now – 2017

2011 Provenance Golden Plains Pinot Noir

Wednesday, 22 August 2012

Stefano Lubiana Pinot Grigio 2011

James Busby has to be blamed for the Pinot Grigio variety being planted in Australia as he was the first to import the variety in 1832.  Now, this variety is planted prolifically in the Yarra Valley, Mornington Peninsula, Tasmania and Adelaide Hills.  The sales of Grigio and Gris have increased over the past 6 years, along with Sauvignon Blanc, which may indicate that its success is positioned in opposition to the oak driven and ripe fruit of Chardonnay.  What Australian winemakers are still figuring out is how to get the best out of this variety.

Stefano Lubiana Pinot Grigio 2011

I had to put aside my preconceptions about this wine as it is not really a Grigio but more like a blend of Grigio and Gris in the one bottle.  The quality of the wine is very high so it was easy to forgive.  In the beginning there was those lovely pear and apples flavour before the mid palate turned rich and textural. Maybe I was being a bit harsh on the wine as it seems to combine the best of both of the wine styles yet still finishes with a nice lightness.

Alcohol: 13%
Price: $28
Rated: 90
Drink: Now – 2015

Chardonnay Skins V Non skins

I am making two white wines this year, both from Chardonnay which I buy from a high quality grower in the Adelaide Hills.  Both wines were picked on the same day from the same part of the vineyard. I selected the picking date due to the flavour profile of the grapes. I have never bothered to get my wines analysed as I trust my own palate.  As I now make my wine up the road from my house and they have the facility to test the wines I decided to get my wines tested yesterday and these were the numbers.

Skin contact 20 days Chardonnay

Alc: 12.8%
TA: 6.8
PH: 3.56

The wine has gone through full malo already and was wild fermented with no addition of sulphur at any stage.

No skin contact and whole bunch pressed straight to barrel.

Alc: 13.3%
TA: 8.0
PH: 3.3

This wine has gone through full malo already and was wild fermented with no addition of sulphur at any stage.

Thomas Wines DJV Shiraz 2010

The weather conditions for the Hunter in 2010 was warm compared to the coolish 2011 and 2012 vintages but the season wasn’t as ideal as the glorious 2009 vintage. While 2009 wines are uniformly brilliant, the 2010 wines can range from good value to down right supreme.  One man that has cut his teeth on producing quality wines from a range of producer including Tyrrell’s and a host of international wineries in the US and Italy is Andrew Thomas so it is interesting to see what he is able to achieve in such a vintage.

Thomas Wines DJV Shiraz 2010

The three reds from Thomas wines are all individual vineyard wines which have a common theme running through them yet they are all totally different. At this stage of the wines development the flavours are locked up in fluffy tannins which combobulate brightness over the course of the 4 days that I tasted this wine. For a 2010 wine this is more full bodied than many others but it does so in a Hunter Valley frame of mind so expect regional earth and a restrained flavour profile. 

What the hell does that all mean? Well, the wine is medium bodied with flavours of plum and raspberries but they aren’t sweet at all.  They are more savoury with notes of sourness running through the wine that has a nice vibrancy of acid at its core. The length of the wine is very long and is filled out nicely with a pop of spice on the back palate. A beautifully constructed wine that seduces the senses.

Alcohol: 13.5%
Price: $30
Rated: 89
Drink: 2013 - 2019

Tuesday, 21 August 2012

Mitolo Jester Shiraz 2010

Frank Mitolo is one of the most important people in the food and wine industry in McLaren Vale.  The Mitolo group is comprised of five different divisions, mainly in the food industry.  Ollo is the olive oil arm which has just secured a massive export order to China while the wines are distributed all over the globe.

Mitolo Jester Shiraz 2010

Pure McLaren Vale in a plush and comforting style, yet it still retains a degree of elegance that only Ben Riggs could put together. You get the usual suspects of licorice and bitter chocolate with ripe blackberries and creaming soda coming through. The palate and aroma’s mirror each other brilliantly but it is the lovely creamy mouthfeel that is most attractive.  When I was tasting this wine, I thought  the price would be around the 40 buck mark which was great when I found out it was 28 RRP.  I would pick up a case of this and crank it out over the next 12 months as this wine offers joy to drink now, even if it could keep for longer.

Alcohol: 15.2%
Price: $28
Rated: 87
Drink: Now - 2018

Hentley Farm Shiraz 2010

Hentley Farm Shiraz 2010

Right from the word go this wine looked good with a huge dose of tannins holding everything together.  Like all of the other wines from this producer the flavours are toned down with specks of sweetness mixed in the flavours of blueberry pie, custard tart, cherry cola and iron fillings. It is the sort of wine that would impress anyone yet this is the entry level wine for Hentley Farm. Bravo for starting out with quality the focus right from the bottom.

Alcohol: 14.7%
Price: $30
Rated: 87
Drink: 2016 - 2022

Henschke Henry’s Seven 2010

When I first tasted this wine I thought that Henry’s Seven meant that there was seven different varieties in the blend but it actually means that the vineyard is seven acres in size with planting of Shiraz, Grenache, Mataro and Viognier.

Henschke Henry’s Seven 2010

As I am not really a fan of Viognier in the Shiraz blends in the Barossa I wasn’t looking forward to tasting this wine but it seems that the white variety has only added slipperiness to the palate and not those overt apricot flavours. The wine starts out with a dried cranberry flavour infused with crushed rocks before a whole load of fruit flavours come rolling in.  Do I see a plum or raspberries? You get both in this wine with a huge dose of spice and star anise with a little red lipstick and cured meat adding some interest. In fact this wine is a three course meal in one bottle. This wine is different than your normal big baller Barossa wine in that it is held back and more balanced between richness and refreshing flavours. While the palate is seamless now I would expect this to rock hardcore with 5 years under its belt.

Alcohol: 14.5%
Price: $33
Rated: 92+
Drink: 2017 – 2026

Monday, 20 August 2012

Hillcrest Vineyard Premium Chardonnay 2010

This wine was picked at the same time as the village but it comes from the oldest plantings in the vineyard.

Hillcrest Vineyard Premium Chardonnay 2010

For the first two days this wine was very difficult to taste but my god did it improve over the next few days. From the start the depth of flavour was profound and on the third day the true balanced showed itself.  Wild flowers intertwined with dried grapefruit skin, almond essence and cracked pepper roll their way down my tongue with verve and a classy swagger. This is one to stash away for a few years and then show off at the Christmas table.

Alcohol: 12.9%
Price: $60
Rated: 93+
Drink: 2015 - 2020

Sunday, 12 August 2012

Sangiovese - Australia V Italy

About three months ago I was sent a huge amount of Sangiovese from Australian and Italian producers and here are the results. I have tasted through all of them but are still in the process of writing up my notes but there are a few things that stuck out in my mind. Sangiovese has moved into the mainstream for Australian consumers and for total plantings around the country.  As it is now a household name, the quality has risen from poor to now being good to very good.  The areas that stands out the most are Beechworth, King Valley, Bendigo, Heathcote and McLaren Vale but the bigest surprise comes from Margaret River.  Carpe Diem has produced two beautiful wines in a more savoury style, that needs a bit of extra bottle age to show its best.  Each of the Sangiovese based wines from this producer follow the Italian train of thought so they are blends with Sangiovese taking the centre stage. The list of the top 6 Sangioveses in the country are listed below.

The top 6 Sangiovese wines in Australia

Castagna La Chiave 2009
Castagna Un Segreto 2009
Coriole Vita 2009
Pizzini Rubacouri 2005
Sutton Grange Giove 2009
Vinea Marson 2010

Coriole provides Sangiovese in the form of a full bodied wine with a little Cabernet in the blend, while Castagna La Chiave sits at the opposite end of the spectrum.  All of these 6 wines should be tasted if you are into top class Australian Sangiovese.

On the other side of the coin. The wines from Italy have dropped in price, due to the strength of the Australian dollar, and the quality of the Italian wines has risen.  This rise in quality resulted from a perception that the majority of wines from the country were very rustic or dirty due to extended maturation in oak barrels, up to ten years, and sloppy winemaking practises.  Italy has changed its whole philosiphy and is now turning out some of its best wines made from a large variety of indiginous grapes that are unique to the area. The country prides itself on producing wines that pair well with food in a meduim bodied savoury style which is everything that consumer is moving towards at the moment. Watch out for quality imports competing with the Sangiovese based wines from Australia.

Triple Take Semillon

Margan Semillon 2011

This wine sits at the cheap end of the spectrum and it does deliver a nice amount of forward flavours in the form of lemon pith, green apples and fresh cut grass.  What happens once the liquid hits my mid-palate is that the flavour becomes dilute. It is a good wine at the price that can be enjoyed at any stage.

Alcohol: 12.5%
Price: $16
Rated: 83
Drink: Now to 6 years

Brokenwood Army Block Semillon 2010

Shy as hell at this stage but after 4 days, the wine shows notes of lime drops, green apples and lemon grass.  The density of the wine builds over this time but never does the wine get become over bearing.  Well, if you don't like mineral style acid then you should steer clear but for this type of wine the acid is needed to ensure a long and beautiful journey to adulthood. At this price, I ask for something special and this wine delivers and more.

Alcohol: 12%
Price: $40
Rated: 93 +
Drink: In 15 years

Tyrrell's Johnno's Semillon 2011

This wine is more about texture and Tyrrell's could be the only winery that would experiment with such a style.  They basket pressed the whole bunches and the juice received little clarification prior to bottling. The flavours explode from the glass the minute the bottle is opened with flavours of lime peel, smash quartz and dried grass.  The wine coats my mouth in a thick yet refreshing manner, holding my attention. This wine is a perfect counterpart to the Vat 1 and is equally as impressive. Buy with pride!

Alcohol: 11.4%
Price: $45
Rated: 93
Drink: Now - 2041

Saturday, 11 August 2012

Winter Wines

Hentley Farm The Beauty 2010

The growing season for 2010 in the Barossa was specular as it didn’t reach the temperature highest that occurred in 07 to 09 allowing more even ripening. What it also gave was a chance to produce fresher wines with greater balance and longevity.

This wine surprised me as it is only medium bodied yet retains the richness that is normally associated with this region. What is equally surprising is the fact that this is a Shiraz Viognier blend but it doesn’t have the overt apricot flavours. Rather the Viognier adds a slipperiness to the mouth feel making this so easy to drink. Complexity is not an issue as the flavours of blueberries, dark chocolate, blood plums and vanilla bean just keep powering through from start to finish.  Barossa pride is written all over this.

Alcohol: 14.4%
Price: $55
Rated: 94
Drink: In ten years

Paradise IV Chardonnay 2011

The wines from Paradise IV are made by an unassuming superstar.  By that I mean he is a school teacher during the day but a wine wizard at night. It could be that Doug is waiting to see how this winemaking thing works out.  Well if this wine is anything to go by, he can expect to sell out everything year in year out without much of an issue.

This wine starts out really restrained yet it is the inbuilt complexity and structure of the wine that is most mesmerising at this stage of its development. The acidity of the wine seems to allow everything else to appear perky and light, even though the flavours are rich. This is so unlike every other Chardonnay in Australia which makes this a truly unique offering.

Alcohol: 13%
Price: $40
Rated: 94
Drink: Give it five years

Spinifex Esprit 2010

Peter Schell seems to be able to craft highly region wines that taste nothing like his counterparts in the area and this wine is no different. It is made from some obscure varieties but it doesn’t really matter as it tastes so yummy.

To begin with the wine tastes of cincault as it is crunch and savoury with a floral element jumping out of the glass but it is soon joined by an earthy dirty aspect on day 2. For the next two days flavours of blackberry and spice jump on board with a little smoked licorice and raspberry adding freshness. I could drink this now it is so good but it would equally thrill with 8 years in the cellar.

Alcohol: 14%
Price: $35
Rated: 90
Drink: Now - 2025

BK Wines Skin n Bones Pinot Noir 2011

On the front label of this wine just below the Skin n Bones it says 256 days.  I’m not sure what this means which gets me thinking, is that how many times Brendon proposed before kirsty, his wife, said yes to him or could it be the number of hugs she gave him while they were setting up their own winery and incurring a massive amount of debt without the security net of working for another winery? Well, no it turns out that 256 is the number of days that this wine has been in contact with its skins.  Just to put that in perspective, most wineries ferment for 14 days on skins before they press them off and tuck them to bed in a barrel.  The use of extended skin contact brings with it some extra risks but if used well can result in added flavour, texture and structure. What running through my mind is how does the penny fall for this wine?

Brilliantly from start to finish as it is a little more savoury than you would expect but it still retains flavours of cherry and spice.  What happens once the fragrant liquid hts your mouth is something to behold and the tannins are beautifully melted onto the flavour whilst still adding texture and enjoyment. This is a wine to savor when it has a few years under its belt.

 Alcohol: 12.5%
Price: $30
Rated: 90
Drink: 2015 and beyond

Kalleske Rosina 2012

How do you make rose? There are a few ways but I will elaborate on two types.  Firstly, the traditional method of picking the red grapes specifically for rose, meaning that they are picked earlier with lighter flavours and higher acid. The grapes are then de-stemmed and crushed when they arrive in the winery. The skins are allowed to stay in contact with the juice only for a short period before they are pressed off into either barrels or stainless steal. The wine is then bottled when the maker thinks the wine is ready. The second way to make rose allows the winemaker to get ride of some juice to improve the quality of their normal label. During the initial fermentation the winemaker bleeds off a proportion of juice to increase the skin to juice ration which increases the flavour, colour and intensity of the finishing wine.  The bled off material is then transferred to tank before bottling. Generally this style of rose has an abundance of flavour but lacks acidity and dryness.

Kalleske Rosina 2012

This wine is vibrant in colour with deep and dark rose coloured hues. On the nose I can smell strawberries and cream with a little spice coming up the rear.  Once the wine hits my palate the sweetness of the strawberries moves toward an Allen's strawberries and cream lolly. In fact, the easy to follow flavours make a good impact on the front of my palate before a pole of acid cuts through. I could see this working really well at the start of summer, when the weather hits 35 degree which they are expecting a lot of this coming year as we move from La Nina back to El Nino.  The long term forecast indicated that Australia is set for temperatures similar to 07, 08 and 09.  I will be drinking more rose this coming year to quench my thirst.

Alcohol: 13%
Price: $18
Rated: 83
Drink: Over summer

Friday, 10 August 2012

Louis Jadot Grands Echezeaux Grand Cru 2009

Echezeaux is a sub region within Cote du Nuits in Burgundy which is one of the hottest properties in the Pinot market.  The total amount of vines is low, 40 hectares, for the number of owners, 88.  The Grand Echezeaux district is the top of the lot with only a small percentage of the 40 ha reaching the quality level. Generally, the wines from this area are loaded with structure with fruit and wild gamey flavours and need 10 years in the cellar to show well.

Louis Jadot Grands Echezeaux Gran Cru 2009

The first thing I notice about this wine is the level of restraint in the flavour profile when you compare it to the Aussie versions. The wine starts out with a little spice and morello cherries before a touch of warm earth cuts in.  What I couldn't look past was the way the wine expanded in my mouth, both with flavours but mostly with a huge tannin backbone that was perfectly balanced with the wine and the world.  There were no holes in the way the wine experience smothered my tongue, it was just pure bliss. 

Alcohol: 13.5%
Price: $500
Rated: 96
Drink: 2020 - 2040
Importer: Red + White

Sunday, 5 August 2012

Castagna La Chiave 2009 + Arancini

Recently I have tasted my way through a fair amount of Sangiovese based wines and I have come up with a top 6.  Two of these wines are made by Julian Castagna which is a huge accolade for such a small winery.  What is his secret? I think it has something to do with Julian’s ability to manage his vineyard which he does along biodynamic practises. Is it biodynamics? No because I have tasted many wines that are produced from organic and biodynamic vineyards but they don’t stack up to Julian’s wines.  Julian some how manages to cram more flavour, balance and structure out of his grapes without letting the alcohol levels creep up. This man is a magician to put it simply.


These little orange risotto balls are similar to suppli but they originated from Sicily. You could serve these as an entrée or place them of a bed of rich tomato sauce as a main if you wish. I served this as an entrée which matched the lightness of Julian's wine brilliantly.  


Large pinch of quality Saffron
250 ml dry white wine
100 g butter
1 large onion, diced
2 garlic cloves, crushed
600 ml quality chicken stock, warm
1 handful of thyme
220 g arborio rice
60 g parmesan, grated
50 g mozzarella, cut into little cubes
vegetable oil for deep-frying

Leave saffron in the wine, while you prepare the onions and rice, for the flavours to seep out. Melt butter in a large deep pan and add onions and garlic. Cook until the onions go soft and then add in the rice and thyme.  Cook for 1 minute and add in the wine and saffron.  Stir frequently until the wine is absorbed and then add the chicken stock a cup at a time.  Always have enough moisture to cover the rice.  When the rice becomes creamy take the pan off the heat and add in the parmesan. Stir until the cheese is mixed through and then spread out the mixture on two trays and refrigerate for 3 hours. 

Heat the oil in a deep pan until it is very hot, 180 degrees. Roll the rice mixture into tight little golf size balls with a piece of cheese in the centre and then roll in breadcrumbs. Lower balls into the oil and leave until they become golden in colour. Pull them out and place on a paper towel before serving. 

Castagna La Chiave 2009

Light body? That is a roger so you will have to be careful what you serve this with. I had to leave this open for a few days so the sweet oak could move from taking centre stage to a more reserved back stage.  Once it did then the enjoyment factor raised a few levels. On day three cherry balm, cinnamon, polish wood and dry roasted herbs were the main players with dried cranberries being the support actress along with a bit of spice. The wine is fine almost like it is clothed in a luxurious silk suit but it doesn’t have the gorgeous factor like its Sangiovese/Shiraz brother. For such a tough year in Beechworth, this wine has so much going for it that I dear ask what the 2010 wine will be like.

Alcohol: 13%
Price: $75
Rated: 91+
Drink: 2017 - 2025