An Australian Wine Blog

Friday, 26 May 2017

Rob Hall Harriet's Vineyard Chardonnay 2015

Citrus, buttermilk, wheaten, with peach-fuzz sensory of delicate stonefruit.

Medium weight, minerally, awakens the senses with a burst of acid. Citrussy acid and flavour. Little textural feel to proceedings. 

It's well balanced, doesn't seem to shout of any one thing in particular, an excellent team composition and fabulous length to boot. 92 

Tasted on: Tuesday 21st March, a Fruit day
Source: Sample
Price: $40
Alcohol: 12.5%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: www.robhallwine.com.au

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Rob Hall Yarra Valley Cabernets 2015

A blend of Cabernet Sauvignon (80%), Merlot (15%) and Petit Verdot (5%).

Smoke and ash sitting atop florals, dusky blackcurrant and the like. Fair twist of seasoning. 

An easy going, languid style - initially. Perks up a little through the mid palate, perky acid and a resurgence of fruit, soft and easy tannin. Super soft and slurpable. 91 

Tasted on: Monday 20th March, a Leaf to Fruit day
Source: Sample
Price: $26
Alcohol: 13.5%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: www.robhallwine.com.au

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Thursday, 25 May 2017

Alkoomi White Label Chardonnay 2015

Plenty of which peach, a little toast too. Perfect - what you want and just gently hums: "Chardonnay". 

Bit of toastiness - perhaps a little overdone, four and not three on the dial. Certainly gives carry, but in a bitter manner. Given where Aus Chardonnay is, for $15 sheets it's a sure fire winner. 

Has enough about it - as opposed to the skinny, skeletal, early picked waifs - to carry off variety with conviction. Just lacks finesse. And look, for the price who's quibbling? 88 

Tasted on: Thursday 23rd February, a Fruit to Root day
Source: Sample
Price: $15
Alcohol: 12.8%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: http://www.alkoomiwines.com.au/

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Chateau Yaldara Reserve Shiraz 2013

A whopping 16% alcohol, a wine that's dark, chewy, leathery - almost Biltong like, giving the hint to that size.

Dense, concentrated, black fruit, almost tarry; the oak is shouting at the top of its lungs, and the black tarry fruit is more than a match in this slanging match. 


You'd have to be of a certain persuasion. It's unashamedly old 'skool' Barossa Shiraz. An oak and fruit Monster. 92 

Tasted on: Tuesday 21st February, a Leaf to Fruit day
Source: Sample
Price: $35
Alcohol: 16.1%
Closure: Cork
Website: http://1847wines.com/

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Wednesday, 24 May 2017

Mr Riggs Mrs Viognier 2015

Subtle wafts of Apricot on show here, sitting atop a floral/ dried grassy/wheaten undertow. 


Quite fine structured, elegant, crisp and snappy. Stonefruit hints, minerally. Avoids the overblown, blowsiness that can afflict. Shows a little oiliness by way of back palate texture. Good showing. 89 

Tasted on: Wednesday 22nd February, a Fruit day
Source: Sample
Price: $25
Alcohol: 13%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: http://www.mrriggs.com.au/

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Tuesday, 23 May 2017

La Linea Lenswood Mencia 2016

I've a curious soft spot for Mencia, after having been lured in to the variety via a magnificent example from Guimo. Of course, a few Aussies are now having a play with the variety, of which d'Arenberg's stab is also reviewed on these pages. Anyway, i'd long since give up hope of tasting this - long sold out - example from the Adelaide Hills, save for finding a bottle in the wonderful East End Cellars.


Admittedly tasted from the cheapest stemware in a hotel room. Has the florals mixed with a little savoury edge. 

What strikes me about the wine is this beautiful balance of fruit meets freshening-about-you acidity with a minerality. 

It's kind of akin to volcanic reds from Sicily in that regard. Just carries a tremendous lightness to, without sacrificing length. Joyous. 92


Tasted on: Friday 19th May, a Root to Flower day
Source: Retail, East End Cellars
Price: $28
Alcohol: 12.5%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: http://lalinea.com.au/

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Thursday, 18 May 2017

d'Arenberg Darry's Original Shiraz Grenache 2014

Classic blend, nigh legendary wine from McLaren Vale's d'Arenberg.

Faintest whiff of a reductive note on show - certainly not an expressive beast on first showing. A little time reveals something of more a savoury bent: earthen, cedary, spiced, yet there's blackberry and suggestion of the Grenache in the background.

Slick, primary fruited palate certainly gives away more than its nose suggests. Dusty tannin, harder - forced - acid on show. it certainly doesn't want for length, although it needs to come together, for that fruit to come together in unison. 89

Tasted on: Saturday 13th May, a Leaf day
Source: Sample
Price: $18
Alcohol: 14.5%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: http://www.darenbergwine.com.au/

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Friday, 12 May 2017

Mr. Riggs Montepulciano d'Adelaide Hills 2015

Alluring. Carries the Monte prettiness with purple florals, black fruit and eucalyptus over underlying vanillin oak. It's pretty, a sure fire hit on aromatics. 

Jam packed with black fruit, spice, in the main pepper. There's a freshening vanilla hit, back to blueberry. A little herbal, blue fruit, Mediterranean frame. It had me thinking of lamb, olives, oregano. 

It carries a subtle length, a richness, black fruited that grows in stature. 90 

Tasted on: Tuesday 21st February, a Leaf to Fruit day
Source: Sample
Price: $30
Alcohol: 14.7%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: http://www.mrriggs.com.au/

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Cush & Cush Wine Co 300 Grenache 2016

Just 300 bottles made, hence the name. 

Deep, earthy, beetroot-esque; black fruit starts to gently shine through against that altogether more serious proposition. There's a suggestion of stem inclusion, via the earth, but really with time it's the fruit that starts to unfurl.

Soft, velvet textured, fine-grained tannin - likely to become a hallmark of Cush & Cush wines. Concedes to a deep, earthen, ironstone presence. Again, sitting before a core of dark fruit. And oh the length, something you'd consider approaching with caution. Or at the least, consider a generous stint in the cellar. 93

Tasted on: Sunday 19th February, a Leaf day
Source: Sample
Price: $65
Alcohol: 13.5%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: http://www.cushandcush.com/

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Thursday, 11 May 2017

Yaldara Reserve GSM 2013

Stalwart blend from the Barossa, unsure of the specificities of the cepage. Draws a pristine, long Cork on opening.

Sweet black fruited nose: mulberry, blackberry, as you wish. Alluring, intoxicating, inviting. There's a little oak, providing a frame for what is the the primacy of fruit. 

Medium, veering to full. You'd suggest the latter, with delicate hands it seems the former. Bright, principally fruit driven (without being overtly fruity). Handles well. 


Latent earthen edge, but it drives home with fruit and a drying carriage of flavour. Tannin almost seems an afterthought. 92 

Tasted on: Tuesday 14th February, a Root day (appropriately, for the lovers out there)
Source: Sample
Price: $35
Alcohol: 14.7%
Closure: Cork
Website: http://1847wines.com/

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Wednesday, 10 May 2017

Gartelmann Sarah Elizabeth Chardonnay 2015

Lemon sherbet dusted over a little oak seasoning. Significant portion of barrel fermentation that is communicated both aromatically and via the palate 


Minerally, spicy twists, both freshening and yet with an underlying depth. I've not always been the biggest fan of Hunter Valley, warmer climate Chardonnay - yet, the freshness here wins me over. It's not the most complex entity, but it's sorbet-like charms carry it off with conviction. 90 

Tasted on: Sunday 19th February, a Leaf day
Source: Sample
Price: $27
Alcohol: 13.2%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: www.gartelmann.com.au

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Out of Step Wine Co, Lusatia Park D Block Sauvignon Blanc 2016

It's hard not to replicate what the Out of Step Crew post: 2016 (was) our 5th year of making wine. Along the way I feel we’ve transitioned from getting excited about varieties we’d like to make to really thinking about the vineyards we work with & what varieties will best express themselves, & why, on those sites. 

The one constant in all our explorations over these 5 years has been sauvignon blanc from Lusatia Park in the upper Yarra Valley, albeit from H block (the 2016 example will be released is due course) rather than D block, which is the wine in question here. But either way we’re adamant now that if treated with respect once it’s off the vine sauvignon blanc can deliver just as much excitement & deliciousness as the vast majority pinot noir & chardonnay from the same region.

There you go kids, block level Sauvy is where it's at these days.

Evokes a 'gold' response: florals, honeyed. Generous, quite opulent, expansive; slate and mineral, fan of acid that spreads across the kid-back palate. Hints of tropical fruit, delicate suggestions of citrus. 

It's less about flavour, a hard one to get your head around from a 'review' perspective, where the risk you run is to try and describe a gamut of flavours. I digress. It's more about feel, feeling, texture and an expansion in the mouth - a wonderful gentle phenolic style. 92


Tasted on: Monday 13th February, a Fruit to Root day
Source: Sample

Price: $28
Alcohol: 13%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: http://www.outofstepwineco.com/

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Tuesday, 9 May 2017

La Bise Sangiovese 2015

This is just what I want, perhaps expect, from a well priced Sangiovese. It doesn't want for a decent amount of fruit - a small portion of the wine is rack dried amarone style to get some good concentration.

Even with that fruit it offers up herbal, savoury twists, somewhat enmeshed with a sweeter cherried edge. Good twist of savoury tannin, nicely balanced. You'd go here. 91

Tasted on: Saturday 11th February, a Leaf to Fruit day 
Source: Sample
Price: $25
Alcohol: 14%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: https://labisewines.com.au

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Yaldara Ruban Shiraz 2014

Milk choc, mulberry, kinda wafery with some suggestion of residual oak (old, not new). Latent blackcurrant shines through.

Middle lacks some assertion, wanting from what the aromatics suggest. Mix of black fruit in the main, fresh, and freshening. Finishes well on the back of a good length. 90 

Tasted on: Sunday 12th February, a Fruit day
Source: Sample
Price: $25
Alcohol: 14.8%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: http://1847wines.com/

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Monday, 8 May 2017

Tim Adams 'The Fergus' 2014

A blend that's ben around the traps for years. Nice touch naming the wine after a grower (oft overlooked) for stepping in with some fruit during a shortage of Cabernet and Shiraz.

Gum leaf, berry fruit, expressly aromatic. Touches of blue fruit (Temp). Medium bodied, fruit driven, powder fine tannin. Great, easy going, structure. Offers what you want.  91  

Tasted on: Saturday 11th February, a Leaf to Fruit day
Source: Sample
Price: $24
Alcohol: 14%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: www.timadamswines.com.au

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Hither & Yon Grenache Mataro 2016

Nigh on pitch-perfect 60/40 blend of two listed players.

There's just something so wickedly, consistently, deliciously moreish about H&Y reds. This no exception, it extracts a juicy, jubey aromatic without straying too far towards confection. Call it an allure, call it what you will, inviting is what it is. 

Slipping around the palate with ease in its easy going, red fruited nature. There's more juicy red fruit, a slip of tannin providing an edge, a framework to carry. Mataro brings up the rear, it's bassy foundations adding length, substance, spice. 

91, almost go a point higher just for inherent smashability and, perhaps, just to rile the fun police.  

Tasted on: Saturday 6th May, Fruit to Root day
Source: Sample
Price: $25
Alcohol: 14.5%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: http://www.hitherandyon.com.au/

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Sunday, 7 May 2017

Yaldara Ruban Grenache 2014

Ripe and rich, pronounced black fruit, smidgen of red rounding out, top spice, oak. Sandy soil perhaps? Expressive nonetheless.

Very full, but with a disarming lightness. Black currant, licorice, a little back palate freshness, salinity. Moderate length, and like me handles its alcohol well. 90 

Tasted on: Wednesday 8th February, a Flower day
Source: Sample
Price: $25
Alcohol: 15%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: http://1847wines.com/

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Friday, 5 May 2017

Margan Breaking Ground Barbera 2015

The Hunter Valley is a long way from Barbera's traditional home of Italy's Piedmont wine region. Andrew Margan took cuttings from Carlo Carino's Montrose Vineyard in Mudgee to establish this vinous immigrant back in 1998.

Pouring a vibrant garnet colour, that visual feast continues through aromas of dark cherry.

A bold and forward wine, in ripeness terms, that balances its fruit against nicely pitched acidity - a hallmark of the variety and ensuring that it can be a very good partner to a variety of foodstuffs.

It expresses itself more on the palate than it does aromatically, beyond that sour cherry intro the use of a combination of some French and second use American oak lends a substantive feel. Cloven spice adds an extra dimension before being kept in check with a delicate bitterness and freshening acid line that extends the palate. 89

Tasted on: Saturday 29th April, a Root day
Source: Sample
Price: $40
Alcohol: 13.5%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: www.margan.com.au

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Yelland & Papps Second Take Grenache 2016

Fragrant, floral, a feast of aromatic intensity. Evokes crushed berries, raspberries - without being jubey - and just a delightful fruit/ sour balance. 

Soft, plush, velvety. Intensity of flavour: burst of berry goodness, with a fine raspy tannin that builds to a crescendo. Excellent fruit/ acid balance that would see this as a winner paired with food - round our way this superbly complemented a milk poached pork belly (Grenache and Pork: a winner!).

Not simply just a fruit pony, also carries a darker edge, dried earth and the like, spicier notes carrying you home. 93 

Tasted on: Sunday 9th April, a Fruit to Root day
Source: Sample
Price: $40
Alcohol: 14.3%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: http://www.yellandandpapps.com/

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Thursday, 4 May 2017

Angullong Fossil Hill Sagrantino 2015

Bright, floral in initial introduction - lurking underneath, a more savoury bent. It's a little fennel seed like, a grind of nutmeg.

Full, big grippy tannins that dominate the palate - its varietal, for sure. Tannins that seem to morph into fine, powdery tannins. Needs food, for sure. Something grilled, barbecued. 


On a cracking length of flavour - keeps you thinking. 92 

Tasted on: Saturday 15th April, a Leaf day
Source: Sample
Price: $26
Alcohol: 14.5%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: http://www.angullong.com.au/

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Clovely Estate Barbera 2015

Interesting to taste this example alongside Andrew Margan's Hunter Valley example.

Exhibiting that hallmark sour cherry for which the variety is famed, it also carries a more savoury line, a little time under oak lending some spice and oak derived aromas.

Deliciously medium bodied, the freshness of the wine carrying the vitality for which the variety is known. Plum, cherry, spice making up the constituent parts and giving a reasonable length. Good wine. 89

Tasted on: Saturday 29th April
Source: Cellar Door
Price: $22
Alcohol: 13.5%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: clovely.com.au

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Wednesday, 3 May 2017

Tim Adams Semillon 2014

Citrus, butter menthol, hints of lanolin, waxed/ candied lime.

Curious citrus, touch honeyed. Gravelly, quartz like across the palate, somewhat disjointed - but I like it. Bold, generous length, keen to see what becomes of it. 90+ 

Tasted on: Friday 10th February, a Leaf day
Source: Sample
Price: $24
Alcohol: 12%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: http://www.timadamswines.com.au/

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Out of Step Wine Co. Denton Hill View Chardonnay 2016

Hand picked, pressed to barrel and then wild yeast fermented. Matured in 10% new/90% used French oak barriques and hogsheads. Full MLF, no fining, racked, settled (but not filtered) and then into bottle. No additions other than sulphur dioxide.

Delicate stone fruit (apricot, peach), that fruit is followed an inherently savoury mien.

Delicate on entry: before minerality, a little toastiness; loaded with citrus, in a very even handed manner. An easy citric acid frame that melds into a creamy, textural form. 

The Out of Step crew are anything but, another flavoursome wine showing good balance and form. 91 

Tasted on: Tuesday 7th February, a Root to Flower day
Source: Sample
Price: $33
Alcohol: 13.5%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: http://www.outofstepwineco.com/

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Tuesday, 2 May 2017

Zonte's Footstep Love Symbol Grenache 2015

Interesting one, in that the palate off the bat delivers far more than the aroma suggests. Aromatically it just comes across as somewhat mute, not really offering up a lot - needing some time to wake, unfurl. 

Quite fleshy, lolls and rolls across the tongue, quite fruitsome - raspberry, jubes and a fine grain of tannin. Carry is good. 

A little back end bitterness, a counterpoint to the fleshy fruit before. Enjoyable. 89 

Tasted on: Thursday 6th April, a Leaf day
Source: Sample
Price: $25
Alcohol: 14.5%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: http://www.zontesfootstep.com.au/

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Zonte's Footstep 'Baron Von Nemesis' Shiraz 2015

Beautifully sweet fruited nose, hints of burned orange, satsuma plum, choc-orange.

Succulent, fresh, vital palate - medium veering to full. Kinda blossoms, grows in stature in the palate. Sweet edged, darker spicier tinged. Lovely balance of the two. Balance, yes. 92 

Tasted on: Tuesday 7th February, a Root to Flower day
Source: Sample
Price: $35
Alcohol: 14.5%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: http://www.zontesfootstep.com.au/

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Zonte's Footstep Lake Doctor Shiraz 2015

Smells pretty ripe, pruney, gamey meat.

Coconut, mint, satsuma plum, fresher than the nose suggests; freshness keeps alcohol in check. Minor back palate bitterness. Goes alright, served at the appropriate temp (as with all). 90 

Tasted on: Monday 6th February, a Root day
Source: Sample
Price: $25
Alcohol: 14.5%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: http://www.zontesfootstep.com.au/

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Monday, 1 May 2017

K1 by Geoff Hardy Autumn Harvest Riesling 2016

Late harvest and naturally botrytised Riesling from the Adelaide Hills, picked some 11 weeks later then K1 would do for a table Riesling.

No mistaking the style of the wine on aroma: sweet, smells unctuous, a veritable cocktail of stonefruit with a key lime edge to it. Not quite going the way of nectar, but approaching so rapidly.

Lavish, thick and broad as you take it in. Sweetness in the extreme - and it pairs delightfully with something in the same vein, think: citrus tart, lime cheesecake, or pomegranate 'Eton Mess' as recommended by the K1 stable.

Once you get beyond the hit of sugar, you are rewarded with a wine of presence that richly rewards long after it has slid down the palate. 92

Tasted on: Saturday 29th April
Source: Sample
Price: $20
Alcohol: 9.5%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: http://www.winesbygeoffhardy.com.au/

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Mac Forbes EB26 Meunier 2016

From the Mac Forbes Experimental Batch (EB) range. The label comments how it's rare to find an old patch of Pinot Meunier in the Yarra Valley. The fruit here being drawn from a 2 acre plot planted back in the 80s.

Pours an incredibly light, radiant hue, looking more like cranberry juice than what one expects for a wine. Has that air of a light wine, hints of that suggestive Cranberry colour, strawberry and almost 'bubble gum' like in its expressiveness.

It's light and airy on the palate too, that strawberry lead aroma not quite leading with the same degree of conviction. It has a little herbal edge through the middle and does lack for something to be anything more than a delicious plaything (as I saw it). That said, I loved it for exactly what it is. 89

Tasted on: Saturday 29th April, a Root day
Source: Cellar Door
Price: $30
Alcohol: 12.5%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: macforbes.com

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Sunday, 30 April 2017

Huntington Estate Special Reserve Shiraz 2012

Residual oak, dark, creosote, rum 'n' raisin. Thick, sludgy, almost tarry; the oak - even at five years is very obvious. 

Pretty tough going, not sure it's ever going to break free of its oak shackles. 87 

Tasted on: Sunday 5th February, a Fruit to Root day
Source: Sample
Price: $36
Alcohol: 14%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: http://huntingtonestate.com.au/

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Zonin Ice Prosecco Demi-Sec NV

Recommended to be served over ice. 

Doing so does seem to embolden the wine.Without, it's soft, delicate, you can almost sense the fuzzy peach skin. 

Given that, it would perhaps suit a Bellini, its inherent sweet pitch a natural against that. A little minerally zing. No doubting the freshness of the wine, a little sweetness and spritz is probably best how to sum this up. No frills fun. 87

Tasted on: Saturday 4th February, a Fruit day
Source: Sample (courtesy of: https://umm.com.au)
Price: $12.99
Alcohol: 11%
Closure: Cork
Website: http://www.zoninprosecco.com/

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Saturday, 29 April 2017

Cush & Cush Wine Co. Mataro 300 2016

If this wine an episode of Friends, it would be billed as somethign akin to: "The one that's impossible to resist". A single barrel 'reserve' Mataro, admittedly $65 is a big ask for a relatively new label. Still the wine holds up to it.

Brambly fruit, perhaps a little stem over kirsch, milk chocolate. Medium bodied, voluptuous, silken. Has a substantive presence on the palate, without being unctuous, mouthfeel that catches you off guard before you notice the gentle rasp of tannin that coats the mid and back palate. 

I keep thinking of the winemakers experience with Pinot Noir and cannot escape the gently textured palate, a mille-feuille of layered texture. Residual black fruit/ kitsch, coffee bean and the texture carried across the finish. A gentle expression of the variety.  

Yet given time, the milk chocolate seems just as prominent, perhaps a touch more Earthen presence, and less primary fruit; medium of body, a touch more blood and stock, ironstone, acid more prominent - but giving freshness and vitality. An altogether different wine with just a little patience. 92  

Tasted on: Sunday 5th February, a Fruit to Root day
Source: Sample
Price: $65
Alcohol: 13.5%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: http://www.cushandcush.com/

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Friday, 28 April 2017

Cush & Cush Wine Co. Grenache 2016

Essentially a barrel selection: from 3 standout barrels that were kept aside from that which went into the Grenache/Mataro blend.

This is McLaren Vale Grenache that carries an inherent red berry charm, in the wrong hands that can manifest as jam or a coulis like sweetness. Here, renowned cool climate winemaker, Dave Cush has harnessed that without sacrificing, or at the expense of, savoury intent.

Possesses an incredible lightness, barely medium bodied, peppery spice and tantalising acid. The palate awakened, positively alive and energised. Tannin feels like an afterthought beyond that onslaught, it's there with burnt spiced edges. The length is intense, seemingly perpetual, with receding tannin. Holds up well with time, if you, dear drinker, can keep your hands off of it. 92+ 

Tasted on: Thursday 2nd February, a Leaf day
Source: Sample
Price: $45
Alcohol: 13.5%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: http://www.cushandcush.com/

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Seville Estate

"So why's it called Seville?" I asked of CEO Grahame Van der Meulen, "it looks nothing like the brown, dusty plains of Spain". 

You see, the town is actually pronounced Seh-vull, named after the daughter of a long-forgotten Mayor who was taken early in somewhat tragic circumstances. 
Seville Estate was a part of the Yarra Valley’s early renaissance. Despite the establishment as Victoria’s first recognised wine region, the combined challenges of phylloxera, along with general economic decline, saw to its decline by the 30s. Roll forward some 30 years to the early 60s when Wantirna was founded. 

And so it was in 1972 that Dr Peter MacMahon and wife Margaret established the first plantings for Seville Estate, and it was the establishment of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir plantings, somewhat pioneering back in the day, that have ushered in the varieties that the region is now known for.

The MacMahon’s hung around until retirement in 1997, selling to the Hunter Valley’s Brokenwood who subsequently offloaded to the Van der Meulen family some 8 years later. And whilst the core Yarra varieties have remained a constant presence at Seville Estate, so ownership changes have been a constant, with the Van der Meulen’s selling up to Chinese investors in 2016. 

Like many things in wine, it is also somewhat a case of back to the future for Seville Estate, for Dylan MacMahon - grandson of the estate’s founders - has been winemaker there since the Brokenwood days and continues to raise the bar for this South-Central Yarra icon.

Wine Reviews
Blanc de Blanc 2014
Aggressive, minerally, quite coarse. Zero dosage. Grapefruit/ citrus acidity does flow, but it lacks finesse 89

Estate Chard 2016
Peach and Melon with a little cashew, familiar and present throughout. Fresh and clean, a little of that cashew creaminess and spice. Long and dry. 92

Reserve Chardonnay 2015
White peach, delicate citrus; delightful minerally acid, vital. Zesty. 94

Estate Riesling 2014
Riesling was present on the property until the mid-90s when it was grubbed out. A block was grafted back in 2006. Barrel fermented - giving that textural mid-palate richness. Florals, a little kaffir, good length. 91

Rosé 2016
Shiraz, Cab, Merlot: strawberry aromatics. Palate shifts more to savoury and spice. Good length. 92

Estate Pinot Noir 2015
25% bunch, 30% new oak for 8m. 1996 plantings. Bramble red fruit, savoury, great tannin and acid. 93

Old Vine Shiraz 2013
Brambly fruit, underlying black fruit, concentrated. Less savoury, but that shifts more to savoury nuances, peppery spice in the palate. Soft, gossamer body, grains tannin. Subtly mintiness perhaps 94

Old Vine Cabernet 2015
Leafy, tobacco, green olive; structured, medium, well trained tannin.

Tasted on: Sunday 26th March, a Flower day
Source: Cellar Door Tasting
Website: http://www.sevilleestate.com.au/

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Thursday, 27 April 2017

Cush & Cush Wine Co Chardonnay 2016

Whole bunch pressed Chardonnay here, unfiltered, giving a delightful haze in glass.

Citrus, fig paste, barest hints of oak - a small amount of new French used.

Oak on entry, stonefruit, grapefruit citrus; has a textural spread, not battonage, the result of bottling unfiltered - hence the slight haze. Hints of spice - savoury to boot. Inherent complexity. 

The back palate shows more savoury charm, drying, a touch of phenolics. 91 

Tasted on: Thursday 26th January
Source: Sample
Price: $25
Alcohol: 12%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: http://www.cushandcush.com/

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Hentley Farm Blanc de Noirs 2016

Billed as a BdN but pours a very distinct blush, more Rosé like - that intent flows through the wine, a very fruitsome individual all about strawberry and cherry.


It possesses an ease, an elegance and charm if you like. Not necessarily simple, perhaps casual is the word I am looking for. 89 

Tasted on: Thursday 26th January
Source: Sample
Price: $27.50
Alcohol: 12%
Closure: Cork
Website: www.hentleyfarm.com.au

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Wednesday, 26 April 2017

Zontes Footsteps The Hills Are Alive Shiraz 2014

Fruit, oak, spice and alcohol; served correctly: florals, stonefruit (Viognier inclusion?).

Jammy, pretty high octane (admittedly at the wrong temp initially); correctly served: medium bodied, lighter in approach, possibly too much so. No shortage of fruit driven flavour, if not as driven. 90  

Tasted on: Wednesday 18th January, a Root day
Source: Sample
Price: $35
Alcohol: 14.5%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: http://www.zontesfootstep.com.au/

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Mount Avoca Old Vine Shiraz 2013

From vines planted in 1971. Two years in oak (25% American, 25% Hungarian, the balance being French) shows on this wine. Less Pyrenees, more rich, sweeter, hedonistic if you like. 

Incredible depth, both from fruit concentration and frame of oak. Chewy, coffee-caramel, intense and deep wine. 

Not quite where I'm at personally, but it will have fans and will cellar exceptionally well. 92 

Tasted on: Mount Avoca Old Vine Shiraz 2013
Source: Sample
Price: $45.95
Alcohol: 13.5%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: https://mountavoca.com

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Tuesday, 25 April 2017

Leeuwin Estate Siblings Sauvignon Blanc Semillon 2015

The herbal Sauvignon Blanc clearly leads here, it comes across as unequivocally Margaret River in its presentation. Tinges of citrus, faint passionfruit, like a neighbourhood pet marking its territory.

Things step up a level on the palate, a modicum of texture  - it's a 66/34 blend and some portion of it sees some barrel ferment - shows its hand, blackcurrant leaf, requisite citrus. More of that leafy, herbal composition. 

Not necessarily one I took a personal shine to. Nonetheless, states its case, being what it is. 89 

Tasted on: Thursday 19th January
Source: Sample
Price: $22
Alcohol: 13.5%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: leeuwinestate.com.au

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Hentley Farm Brass Monkey Vineyards Pinot Grigio 2016

Beurre Bosc pear over creamy slithered almond and faint spiced hints.

Has a touch of body, unusual giving the low alc and 'Grigio' designation. Pear, florals, not wanting for cheek-clenching acidity. 

Freshness, with bags of citrus bringing up the rear. High bronze. 90  

Tasted on: Monday 16th January, a Fruit day
Source: Sample
Price: $24.50
Alcohol: 12%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: www.hentleyfarm.com.au

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Monday, 24 April 2017

Alkoomi White Label Semillon Sauvignon Blanc 2016

Carries the dried grass/straw, citrus of the constituent varieties, 67% and 33% respectively. 

Citrus, a little slate, feels a little flat, dilute. Not my favourite in the range, freshness goes OK to lift and enliven. 86 

Tasted on: Monday 16th January, a Fruit day
Source: Sample
Price: $15
Alcohol: 12.5%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: http://www.alkoomiwines.com.au/

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Patina Scandalous Riesling 2014

Very pronounced citrus here: lemon, lime, lemon butter. There's even something a touch more tropical: suggestive of pineapple juice


The palate thick and broad, the residual sweetness (18 g/l) shining through - albeit lacking some balancing acid. Fruit quality high, giving some length. Overall simple, missing that balancing acid, but inoffensive. 87

Tasted on: Wednesday 11th January, a Root to Flower day
Source: Sample
Price: $25
Alcohol: 12%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: http://www.patinawines.com.au/

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Thursday, 20 April 2017

Mount Avoca Shiraz 2013

Real burst of mixed berry goodness. A little oak, pepppery spice. Nothing's dominating, or jockeying for prime position. Balanced. 

Medium bodied, a wine incredibly at ease with it itself. Balanced. It comes up again. Red, black fruited - savoury edges: leafy, pepper. Tannin is not too much to speak of. Ease, flow and comfort. 90

Tasted on: Monday 9th January, a Root day
Source: Sample
Price: $29.95
Alcohol: 13.5%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: https://mountavoca.com

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Wednesday, 19 April 2017

Alkoomi White Label Shiraz 2014

Black fruit, fudge, licorice and spice. Fairly non-descript; medium - and perhaps veering to full - a touch of earth in the middle. 

It's a line it straddles well, if a little monotonously. You'd be happy to drink this with ease, more so when it remember it checks in at $15. 88 

Tasted on: Sunday 8th January, a Fruit to Root day
Source: Sample
Price: $15
Alcohol: 14.5%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: http://www.alkoomiwines.com.au/

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