An Australian Wine Blog

Sunday, 25 May 2014

Shaw & Smith Adelaide Hills Shiraz 2012


A strong vintage for Shiraz in the Adelaide Hills, and when you add in to the equation the Shaw & Smith team you end up with a quite fantastic example of cool climate Shiraz.

Touches of cassis, damson and blackberry; flecks of pepper and pan juices herald the wine's introduction.

Cooler climate - a wine like this would normally have the marketing team running to embrace the 'Syrah' moniker - here the wine is squarely medium-bodied, exquisitely grained tannin: fine, tight and yet at the same time also generous. A delight. 94 

Tasted on: Thursday 22nd May, a Flower  Day 
Source: Noosa International Food and Wine Show
Price: 5 tokens ($44 online via winery)
Alcohol: 13.5%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: http://www.shawandsmith.com/

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Pertaringa Undercover Shiraz 2012


Bearing similarities in profile to its bigger brother, the 'Over the Top' Shiraz, by virtue of choc-plum. The path becomes a little divergent with the presence of some red fruit that pops up its head.

This is on the face of it, a sweeter wine with red and black fruit present, lighter in feel, drying fine-grained tannin and even a touched of grilled meat. 

Finishes with black fruit, flashes of violet, smooth and easy going in nature. One for now, now harm will be done with up to 6-7 years in the cellar. 90-91 


Tasted on: Wednesday 21st May, a Root transitioning to Flower day 
Source: Sample
Price: $22
Alcohol: 14.5%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: http://www.pertaringa.com.au/

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Saturday, 24 May 2014

Pertaringa Over The Top Shiraz 2012


The biggest surprise with this wine was the choice of closure, it's not so often these days that you find an Aussie wine under cork.

That aside: choc-plum-hazelnut oak; a big, bold and rich wine - but not brutish. Red and black fruits abound on entry, we catch glimpse of a little acid balanced against spice by way of pepper and anis. Tannin is gorgeously fine-grained, backed up by a little toasty oak bitterness and a suggestion of citrus oil.

Depth and intensity of flavour, carries its weight well - I wish I could say the same. 93

Tasted on: 20th May 
Source: Sample
Price: $40
Alcohol: 15%
Closure: DIAM
Website: http://www.pertaringa.com.au/

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Lowe Block 8 Organic Shiraz


Impenetrable darkness in glass; sweet oak, black fruit and black forest jam against a wet clay/ earthen note.

Mid-weight, black fruit on the palate: cassis, mulberry - balanced, but fruit and palate length somewhat at odds against both the price and what one might expect from the 'darkness'. 89

Tasted on: Monday 19th May, a Fruit to Root day 
Source: Sample
Price: $35
Alcohol: 13.7%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: http://www.lowewine.com.au/

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Chapel Hill Parson's Nose Shiraz 2013


It's a mark of the quality of the Chapel Hill portfolio that I expected a little more from this wine.

Dark impenetrable core, a vibrant rim, aromatic introduction of blue fruits, chocolate and florals.

Tart fruit on entry, a little nippy acid to follow, earth and spice - feels like there is a little something missing from the middle for me - fruit represents itself towards the back palate. Decent-ish length. You'll be a happy consumer at $16. 88

Tasted on: Wednesday 14th May, a Flower Day 
Source: Sample
Price: $16
Alcohol: 14.5%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: http://www.chapelhillwine.com.au/

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Toolangi Yarra Valley Shiraz 2010


I'm a little unsure how a $20 Shiraz comes to market as a four year old. Regardless, savoury on opening, suggestive of whole bunch - 20% inclusion of stems - cassis, bramble/briar.

Peppery, hints of charred meat, violets. Seems quite closed, flashes of eucalypt; good savoury body - fruit appears somewhat lacking.

Medium bodied, fine grain tannin, good length but somewhat lacking in cohesion and presence to be considered 'better' - however one approaches such a qualitative assessment. 89

Tasted on: Sunday 11th May, a Root Day 
Source: Sample
Price: $20
Alcohol: 13%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: http://www.toolangi.com/

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Wednesday, 21 May 2014

Vinteloper UWP Red #1 2013


The next installation from the David Bowley curated Urban Winery Project, and as Bowley puts it: "hundreds of people have helped foot stomp, basket press and tranfer this wine to oak for maturation, tasting it along the way. Now complete, a wine by the people, for the people".

Quite possibly one of the most drinkable wines I have come across. A curious mix of Aglianico, Shiraz, Barbera, Graciano, Sangiovese and Pinot Noir - it opens with an eclectic mix of strawberry, raspberry, Mediterranean herbs before segueing to a little black olive - exhibiting savoury depth juxtaposed against a juicy personality.

Schizophrenic in some respects, on entry it reveals itself to soft and spicy: juicy, gummy, touches of whole berry/ carbonic effects; a little bucolic on the middle - licorice, touches of woody tannin, cinnamon sticks with fresh and more-ish acid.

Whether I've called this correctly is in many regards neither here nor there. There is so much going on that I would hazard we'd all see this differently. 91 - a bloody drinkable proposition but probably lacks formal structure and the true length that would be sought to make it a higher scorer. 

Tasted on: 23rd April, a Root Day 

Source: Winery Purchase
Price: $25
Alcohol: 14%
Closure: Cork
Website: http://www.vinteloper.com.au/

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Tuesday, 20 May 2014

Yangarra Roussanne 2013


I'm reminded of Debussy's "La fille aux cheveux de lin" (girl with the flaxen hair) when taking in this wine in glass. A composed wine of delicate honey, honeysuckle and suggestions of citrus rind.

Beautifully composed mid-weight and mid-texture, a suggestion of minerality where the intensity of the wine builds. Honeyed, a gentle pinch of phenolics and a creamy-richness following through with a cascading length. Sublime. 92

Tasted on: Monday 19th May, Fruit to Root day

Source: Retail, Cru Bar & Cellar
Price: $25
Alcohol: 13.5%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: http://www.yangarra.com/

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Friday, 16 May 2014

Hither & Yon Nero d'Avola 2013


Attractively packaged releases from Hither & Yon, a new-ish label to market but the Leask family is certainly not new to wine.

Delightful black cherry in colour. Reels you in from the off with raspberry, cherry skin, a touch of earth and a ferrous streak.

Light on its feet, raspberry followed by tart cranberry; smooth and juicy, tang and tart - so approachable. Get into it - you won't be disappointed. 89

Tasted on: Friday 25th April, a Flower day 
Source: Retail, Grand Central Cellars
Price: $20
Alcohol: 12.5%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: http://www.hitherandyon.com.au/

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Monday, 12 May 2014

Barambah Rack Dried Semillon 2010

A lovely liquid amber in the glass, the concentrated flavours in this wine are the result of rack-drying for 5 weeks.

Treacly, dried straw, apricot, honey and dried citrus rind. It's thick and lavish in feel. Apricots, dried stonefruit, golden syrup qualities here. Length is a little on the slow burn, creeping up on you. 

A delightful dessert style, I paired this with a citrus and chocolate cake with a little creme anglaise poured over. Apricot tart or panacotta would be another good option - you'd want the sugar cranked up to at least nine to handle the wine. 91

Tasted on: Saturday 19th April, a Leaf Day
Source: Retail, Craft Red Hill
Price: $34
Alcohol: 10.5%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: http://www.barambah.com.au/

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