An Australian Wine Blog

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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Alkoomi Black Label Chardonnay 2016

Has an old school feel to it: less of the funk and more of the oaky hunk. There's citrus, stone fruit and more oak present on the palate via spice and cedar.  

In addition: creamy citrus, stonefruit. Excellent value wine for those seeking something  deliciously 'old school'. 91 

Tasted on: Sunday 8th January, a Fruit to Root day
Source: Sample
Price: $24
Alcohol: 12.9%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: http://www.alkoomiwines.com.au/

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Tuesday, 18 April 2017

Gartelmann Philip Alexander 2013

A little right bank blend thing going on here (Merlot, Cab Sauv, Petit Verdot) that sings of its constituent parts: plum, leaf, tobacco hints 

Herb and earth add an extra edge to what is a medium bodied blend. There's more of that delicious and juicy plum character and something like a tomato juice sauciness. Lends itself nicely to a ragu. 91 

Tasted on: Saturday 7th January, a Fruit day
Source: Sample
Price: $25
Alcohol: 14.4%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: www.gartelmann.com.au

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Pertaringa Undercover Shiraz 2015

Ripe blackcurant sits proudly on the nose of this one. A little violet floral.

Smooth, almost black currant pastille like. Richness, ripeness, hints of mintiness. A little chocolate underneath, but it's really about freshness of fruit. Go now. 90 

Tasted on: Friday 6th January, a Leaf to Fruit day
Source: Sample
Price: $22
Alcohol: 14.5%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: http://www.winesbygeoffhardy.com.au/

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Monday, 17 April 2017

d'Arenberg The Money Spider Roussanne 2016

Stone fruit, more peach than anything, nicely spiced with woody hints - celeriac, fennel perhaps. 

Has plenty of body, the textural feel you'd expect from a variety as this. Spice resurgent on the mid to back palate, on a good length to boot. 

Good release. Roussanne at $20 a winner. 90 

Tasted on: Sunday 8th January, a Fruit to Root day
Source: Sample
Price: $20
Alcohol: 12.7%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: darenberg.com.au

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Skinner Vineyards Roussanne 2013

Preddominantly Roussanne with a few other varieties of Southern French origin thrown in (85% Roussanne | 8% Grenache Blanc | 5% Marsanne | 1% Viognier | 1% Picpoul Blanc).

Softly imbued with a little honey, there's a little nuttiness at the core, florals. 

It really is a textural wine, 2 years on gross lees might do that. Spice - cinnamon, a little ginger - zest, and cleansing acidity that cut nicely through the dairy of the Risotto that I paired this with. 

Slight astringent note on the back palate - barely noticeable with food. Great memory of a fantastic visit. 91 

Tasted on: Friday 6th January, a Leaf to Fruit day
Source: Sample
Price: $28 (US$)
Alcohol: 14.3%
Closure: Cork
Website: http://skinnervineyards.com/

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Sunday, 16 April 2017

Terre á Terre Sauvignon Blanc 2015

Lychee, citrus, barley, faint pineapple juice, black currant leaf.

Balance of fruit presence, texturally nuanced, acid. Tickle of spice brings up the rear. 


Fades to a gentle finish. Assured. Composed. Doesn't quite excite in the way it has before. 91 

Tasted on: Friday 6th January, a Leaf to Fruit day
Source: Sample
Price: $32
Alcohol: 13.9%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: https://terreaterre.com.au

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Robert Stein Half Dry Riesling 2016

I do like a little off-dry Riesling, something with just a little retained sugar (here 10g residual), just works wonders at cutting through some devilish spice.

Lime, florals, a suggestion of fennel pollen. 

Immediately it marries both acidity balanced against a little sweetness.  It's a punch of flavour, a veritable explosion that just gently recedes across the palate. 

Paired this coconut milk and chilli poached chicken. The RS here more than a match for that touch of spice. Preferred this to the 2015. 91 

Tasted on: Thursday 5th January, a Leaf day
Source: Sample
Price: $40
Alcohol: 11.5%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: http://www.robertstein.com.au/

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Saturday, 15 April 2017

d'Arenberg The Hermit Crab Viognier Marsanne 2015

Blend of Viognier (58%) and Viognier (42%). Carries an interesting herbal edge on opening, kinda like a cold Jasmine tea perhaps. Requisite florals, a little apricot nectar.

More stonefruit on the palate, more defined this time. Sweeter, more of that nectar seen earlier. 

Not particularly profound in length, or textural. But pleasant enough.  88

Tasted on: Thursday 5th January, a Leaf day
Source: Sample
Price: $15
Alcohol: 13.1%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: darenberg.com.au

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Topper's Mountain Barrel Ferment Sauvignon Blanc 2013

Unmistakably Sauvignon Blanc, yet with more twists and turns than a Riviera hairpin. Your senses are greeted with preserved citrus, lime brûlée, stonefruit.

Medium bodied, part-textural with remnants of acid, albeit softened with fermentation in oak. 


Great length, with a waxy, slippery finish long on presence. 93 

Tasted on: Thursday 5th January, a Leaf day
Source: Sample
Price: $30
Alcohol: 11.7%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: https://www.toppers.com.au/

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Friday, 14 April 2017

Gartelmann Jesse Shiraz 2013

Greets you with a grilled nut, meaty vibe that sits over a little red fruit. 

Medium weight, nice sweet fruit at juxtaposition to that primarily savoury nose. There's cherry, plum, a little gummy/mintiness. 


Pleasant drinking. Falls a little short, but enjoyable. 90 

Tasted on: Wednesday 4th January, a Flower to Leaf day
Source: Sample
Price: $30
Alcohol: 14.2%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: www.gartelmann.com.au

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d'Arenberg The Footbolt Shiraz 2014

Choc-fudge, berry fruit, smidge of oak. A fine Footbolt, regional and varietal in composition. 


Smooth, thick, glossy and spiced. Rough tannin can be overlooked for a wine that packs a punch. Serve with something oozing with a little blood, or a generous rich stew. Fine form. 91  

Tasted on: Wednesday 4th January, a Flower to Leaf day
Source: Saample
Price: $18
Alcohol: 14.6%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: http://www.darenberg.com.au/

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Thursday, 13 April 2017

Bremerton Special Release Fiano 2016

Floral, honeyed, snow pea and a little sea spray overlaid. 

Texture + with acid. Good balance, food friendly. Generous in nature. Very pleasant. 


Good length from that generosity. 90 

Tasted on: Wednesday 4th January, a Flower to Leaf day
Source: Sample
Price: $24
Alcohol: 13%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: http://www.bremerton.com.au/

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Pertaringa Stage Left Merlot 2015

Somewhat generic in its aromatic profile: plummy, damson. You get the drill.

Medium-full bodied, ripe, herbal, palate warmth - showing its 14.5%. Back palate mintiness and a rich dose of choc-salinity.


Seen better from the label. 88 

Tasted on: Tuesday 3rd January, a Flower day
Source: Sample
Price: $22
Alcohol: 14.5%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: http://www.winesbygeoffhardy.com.au/

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Wednesday, 12 April 2017

Bremerton Racy Rosé 2016

Ripe, red, berry fruit - cranberry primarily. Hints of wild strawberry.  

Thick, almost textural in nature. Sugar adds body and provides a chewy, substantive feel. 

Finishes well, fruit laden and a hint of spice. Consistent. 89 

Tasted on: Monday 2nd January, a Root to Flower day
Source: Sample
Price: $17
Alcohol: 12.5%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: http://www.bremerton.com.au/

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Patina NV Rosé

"Back in 2008 I co-fermented Pinot Noir and Chardonnay destined to become a sparkling wine. This wine would have made great bubbles but I just couldn’t get my heart into it. So in 2013 I decided to change direction and added it to the juice of 2013 Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc to re-ferment and make it into a non-vintage rosé. The result was an absolutely delightful wine that set the direction for my rosé style."

Dried Citrus peel, lifted, spice. Very attractive,  citrus and stonefruit tinged.  

Textural, almost challengingly so, with a drying quality across the back palate. Chalky, powdery, red apple sweetness. 

Citrus oil. Complexity. 93 

Tasted on: Sunday 1st January, a Root day
Source: Sample
Price: $25
Alcohol: 13.5%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: http://www.patinawines.com.au/

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Tuesday, 11 April 2017

d'Arenberg The Anthropocene Epoch Mencia 2016

Anthropocene
ˈanθrəpəˌsiːn/
adjective
relating to or denoting the current geological age, viewed as the period during which human activity has been the dominant influence on climate and the environment.

At the time of writing, only the fourth producer of Mencia - a grape of Spanish origin, largely found up in the rather hilly Ribeira Sacra - in Australia that i’m aware of, after Oliver’s Taranga (also McLaren Vale), La Linea (Adelaide Hills) and Dell'uva (Barossa Valley).

Vivid in the glass, smells exotic - Middle Eastern: pomegranate, hibiscus - really bright and somewhat evocative.

Thick, chewy, fairly substantive in the mouth. Silken, it glides across the palate - at striking contrast to this are meaty, somewhat ferrous tannins - provide an additional element for the palate to latch onto. Back palate shows a spike of heat/ acid, subsiding against the mouth-coating  tannin.  

A colourful addition to Australia’s technicolour winemaking landscape. 90

Tasted on: Thursday 30th March, a Fruit day
Source: Sample
Price: $29
Alcohol: 14.2%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: http://shop.darenberg.com.au/

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d'Arenberg Laughing Magpie Shiraz Viognier 2012

The "laughing Magpie' was an old favourite back in the UK, the familiar red stripe (or sash as I think of it) with the beautiful lilac denoting this wine. All changed now, of course, with the re-imaging some 3 years or so back. One thing that hasn't changed mind is the significant input of Viognier (7%) with the balance being the Shiraz. 

Vibrant, purple-rimmed wine in glass - tell-tale sign of the v-weed. Black fruit, has floral lift from the Viognier. Almost black currant cordial like in its expression, concentrated and pure. 

Lavish, thick wine, layered, sweet black fruit cascades across the palate. It's thick, chewy - there's no denying the physical presence, but it's somewhat simple. 

Good presence, but a wine of heft more than guile and subtlety. 89

Tasted on: Wednesday 28th December, a Leaf to Fruit day
Source: Sample
Price: $29
Alcohol: 14.4%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: http://shop.darenberg.com.au/

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Monday, 10 April 2017

Ballycroft Small Berry Shiraz 2014

Just over one and a half tonne of fruit picked in Feb 2014 (1.675 tonne from 5 acres on 13/2/13, that's only 335kg to the acre) pumped over 4 times a day for 10 days. Just under 100 dozen made. Spends 24 months in shaved out American Oak. Sent to bottle unfiltered. Due for release later this year.

Alcohol dialled back a notch in this ’14 (14.7% compared to the 16.2% of 2013). It shows. Not such a bombastic, powerhouse comparative to its prior year stablemate. Don’t get me wrong, it’s still rich and carrying that potent line of plum in the glass.

Supple in the mouth, silken, a glossy and polished line of - primarily - black currant fruit races through the palate. It’s a more considered take on the style. Greenock fruit tends to be quite a warm, chocolatey, rich manifestation and this is no exception.

Again I would caution those buyers who have perhaps become accustomed to a trend toward a lighter style of wine. For those who savour this richer, hedonistic take: back up the truck! 92

Tasted on: Saturday 1st April, a Root day
Source: Sample
Price: $45
Alcohol: 14.7%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: www.ballycroft.com

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Ballycroft Small Berry Shiraz 2013

Just over a tonne of fruit was picked from Joe and Susan Evans' dry grown vineyard on Feb 2013 (1.3 tonne from 5 acres on 17/2/13, a mere 260kg to the acre). It was pumped over 4 times a day for 15 days. Only 93 dozen made, spends 36m in shaved out American Oak. Unfiltered.

Unashamedly ‘big’ style of wine from the self-styled “little winemaker”. It exudes a rich, powerful, high-octane, nigh on porty aroma. Think soaked prunes, dense and heady plum, blackberry jam.

Thick, chewy, somewhat hedonistic. You’ve got to like a bit of fruit sweetness to your wine; residual oak tannin that courses through your palate, leaving a drying sensation. Lingering black fruited beast that you just cannot escape from.

The quality is undeniable. But, caveat emptor, you’ve to appreciate the intent and full on nature of the wine Joe has nurtured and crafted here. 91

Tasted on: Saturday 1st April, a Root day
Source: Sample
Price: $45
Alcohol: 16.2%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: www.ballycroft.com

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Sunday, 9 April 2017

Edmunds St. John Bone-Jolly Gamay Noir 2014

Essential research prior to a visit to California's Sierra Foothills was undertaken by way of Jon Bonné's "The New California Wine". You see, the Sierra Foothills, and particularly the area around Fair Play AVA are the original gold rush country, and Fair Play sits atop a huge Granite monolith. And Granite and Gamay are happy bedfellows.

Steve Edmunds is the principal of Edmunds St. John, and whilst he might ply his trade in the Bayside city of Berkeley, he largely sources fruit from up in the Sierra Foothills. It was his Gamay that I was particularly keen to sought out.
Inherent brambly red fruit, a little underlying meat and funk, a suggestion of fennel. Possesses a gently spiced palate, black pepper that traverses. Fine tannin that carries that fresh cracked pepper across the finish line.

Tasted on: Sunday 25th December, a Flower day
Source: Retail, Chambers Street Wines
Price: $21 (US)
Alcohol: 12.6%
Closure: Cork
Website: http://edmundsstjohn.com/

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Bremerton Special Release Malbec 2015

Malbec from Langhorne Creek and those wily Willson sisters, Rebecca and Lucy.

Fruits of the forest, a little creamy vanillin from oak use.

Medium bodied, moderate acidity, good raspy tannin. A real mouthful of ripe black fruit - present on both the nose and backed up on the palate delivering satisfying length. 


Good presence of fruit, flavour and indeed feel. 90 

Tasted on: Saturday 24th December, a Flower day
Source: Sample
Price: $24
Alcohol: 14.5%
Closure: Screwcap
Website:

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Saturday, 8 April 2017

Robert Stein Reserve Riesling 2016

Long history of winemaking down at Robert Stein, marking 40 years. This superb Reserve Riesling comes off vines just shy of that milestone. Marvellous vinous heritage.

Lemon rings strong here, bit of lemongrass, soap. Very strong aromatic profile. 

Tang, sweet/sour kinda feel. Great zip of acid to it, with a gentle flow. Freshness personified. 


Lingers long on the memory. Superb. 94

Tasted on: Saturday 24th December, a Flower day
Source: Sample
Price: $50
Alcohol: 11.5%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: http://www.robertstein.com.au/

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Robert Stein Mudgee Riesling 2016

Lemon, bath salts, lemongrass perhaps.

Tangy freshness, ease and flow. Good acid, without being too tart. Only quibble is a somewhat truncated finish, but it does gently lead the drinker 91 

Tasted on: Sunday 18th December, a Leaf to Fruit day
Source: Sample
Price: $30
Alcohol: 12%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: http://www.robertstein.com.au/

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Friday, 7 April 2017

Barambah First Grid Verdelho 2016

Winemaker Peter Scudamore-Smith MW: "I used my experience of making Riesling with this wine, that in conjunction with use of phenolics from skin contact wines". It shows.

From Queensland's South Burnett region, some three hours Nort-West of its capital Brisbane.

A little dried grass, peach skin.

Palate shows good balance between texture with retained acid - providing width and length. Fruit character shines through with pear segments, lychee


Good length, flowing, phenolics add extra interest, grip. 91 

Tasted on: Saturday 24th December, a Flower day
Source: Sample
Price: $
Alcohol: 12.5%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: http://barambah.com.au/

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Mount Avoca Limited Release Viognier 2015

Just say Vee-on-yay.

Pretty, aromatic wine: honeysuckle, apricot. 

Substantive, chewy, spicy. Textural and yet drying, achieves a lot in its frame. Spicy, a bit of that gingery pucker that you often see in quality Viognier. 


Good bite, length, quality. 92 

Tasted on: Sunday 11th December, a Fruit day
Source: Sample
Price: $33.95
Alcohol: 13%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: https://mountavoca.com

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Thursday, 6 April 2017

Huntington Estate Reserve Semillon 2015

Grassy, herbal, lemongrass.

Packs a punch, livewire acidity that shoots bolts across the palate. There's suggestion of lime and stony minerality - really carried by that energy. 

I want more all up. It's not bad, just come to expect more from the Estate and so with a 'Reserve' moniker appended. 90 

Tasted on: Sunday 11th December, a Fruit day
Source: Sample
Price: $28
Alcohol: 11.5%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: http://huntingtonestate.com.au/

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Mount Avoca Malakoff Vineyard Shiraz 2013

Exemplary Shiraz from the famed Malakoff Vineyard, up in the Pyrenees region of Victoria.

"Selected parcels of fruit sourced from the exceptional Malakoff vineyard were fermented on skins for eight to ten days in open oak barrels and hand plunged to maximise fruit aroma and flavour without excessive tannin extraction.

Two hundred case produced. A particularly rich, opulent wine in the glass - sheer class (and oak, admittedly) waft out of the glass. That optimal combination of fruit married to oak, spice. Touch of violet florals and you’d suggest there’s some Viognier in this, with that floral lift and it’s vibrancy in glass.

Packs a punch in its refined manner: classy black fruit, intense pepper, oak. It has an exquisite spice tinged structure, that effortlessly carries the wine. Length in spades, 94.

Tasted on: Friday 9th December, a Leaf Day
Source: Sample
Price: $47.50
Alcohol: 13.8%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: https://mountavoca.com

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Wednesday, 5 April 2017

Ridgemill Estate 'The Lincoln' Shiraz Viognier 2014

Delightful aromatics here: florals, underlying apricot hints - subtle, the watch word. All this is backed up with a little spice, added depth to what it is quite a gentle wine, of subtlety.

Smooth, barely medium bodied wine on entry. You don’t initially notice the fine carriage of return, subtly it creeps up on you, fine-grained and persistent.

It seems only 6 months back that I was reviewing the inaugural, 2013, release of this wine. I’d suggest that it’s quite possibly going to emerge as one of Ridgemill Estate’s stars: consistent. 92

Tasted on: Friday 9th December, a Leaf Day
Source: Sample
Price: $30
Alcohol: 13.5%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: 

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Mount Avoca Estate Range Merlot 2015

"Sourced from 21 years old vines planted rocky loam soils, located on the Central eastern slopes of the Pyrenees ranges at 280 metres. The grapes were handpicked in early-April, crushed, de-stemmed and pressed into stainless tank. Fermentation took place over 19 days with selected yeast, after this the wine was transferred into French oak barrels (four years old). The wine was kept on lees contact for a further four months. Finally, after six months the wine was racked, stabilised and prepared for bottling."

Oak, coffee and mocha more in the mix than fruit - yet it’s there, in the background and seeking to set out it’s stall.

Shows its hand on the palate, where it comes across with a little savoury and tart bent. Smooth, supple, but lacking vitality and varietal composition for mine. 87

Tasted on: Friday 9th December,a Leaf Day
Source: Sample
Price: $37.50
Alcohol: 13.5%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: https://mountavoca.com

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Tuesday, 4 April 2017

Topper's Mountain Barrel Fermented Gewürztraminer 2015

Has the muskiness, the Turkish Delight, albeit softened, and augmented by a gentle spice from the barrel fermentation.

Textural, lavish, spiced; it enlivens, gently tickles as it jives across the palate - spreading across the entire cavity. Fresh, dry and drinking well. Nicely offsets a little spice with its sweet edged nature. 92 

Tasted on: Wednesday 7th December, a Flowerday
Source: Sample
Price: $35
Alcohol: 13.8%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: http://www.toppers.com.au/

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Ridgemill Estate Eloise Sparkling Brut Rosé 2014

A Brut Rosé companion for Eloise, a 50/50 blend of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay; Cognac dosage. Pours a delightful copperish hue. 

Cumquat marmalade, macerated strawberry; suggestion of stonefruit brioche. 

Lively, minerality, positively effervescent. Flavour presents more of the same on the palate, the liveliness carrying the flavours. There's something like burnt citrus oil on the back palate - curious. But not unenjoyable. 87 

Tasted on: Monday 5th December, a Root day
Source: Sample
Price: $26
Alcohol: 12.5%
Closure: DIAM
Website: ridgemillestate.com

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Monday, 3 April 2017

Hither & Yon Nero d'Avola 2016

"The fruit was handpicked in the early morning of April 1 and delivered to the winery where it was then gently de-stemmed and crushed into open top fermenters. A cold soak took place for 5 days, with gentle hand plunging taking place 3 times per day. Fermentation was for 8 days, with a high portion of whole berries being retained, then lightly pressed to tank where the free run juice and pressings were combined. Once the wine was dry, it was sent to 6-7 year old French barriques, all of the process to retain vineyard and fruit freshness. A light screen filtration, then bottling; completing the process on October 17, 2016 and sealed under Stelvin screw cap."

Boysenberry - often strikes me as a very regional aroma - with varietal elements of woody spice, spice that just lifts things, tickles the nasal cavity.

Quite a chewy wine, somewhat at odds to that aromatic intro that suggests lightness. That’s no criticism, it provides something to latch onto, to take into the mouth, roll it around and savour its decent length. Good mix of fruit, nicely pitched acidity, herbal twists - and you’d suggest the faintest line of aniseed.

Good length, fine line of tannin adds to that. Another ripper. 91

Tasted on: Friday 9th December, a Leaf Day
Source: Sample
Price: $30
Alcohol: 13%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: http://www.hitherandyon.com.au/

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Mount Avoca Limited Release Nebbiolo 2015

Fermented in tank, after which the wine was transferred into French and Hungarian oak barrels (two and four years old). Lees for four months, then racked off for bottling. So all up, something youuthful and fresh, rather than the austere style that Nebbiolo can be.

Savoury, woody, touch of liquid smoke, leather and black cherry. 

Smooth, silken bodied on entry - modicum of tannin, one would expect more for the variety. Has good flow mind, moving across the palate nicely, resurgence of black fruit toward the back palate and a flash of acid that gives extra carry. 

Personal questions over the asking price. More like a Langhe style, youthful, for now. 90 

Tasted on: Monday 5th December, a Root day
Source: Sample
Price: $60
Alcohol: 13.5%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: https://mountavoca.com

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Sunday, 2 April 2017

Ridgemill Estate WYP Chardonnay 2015

WYP = Wet Your Pants, an alternative descriptor for 'Reserve' wine.

Sees no new oak, half the fruit was fermented in barrel (one one year old and another two year old). We see that by way of a delicate struck match funkiness. Stonefruit, Lime, green apple, a faint nuttiness, nougat oak.

Textural, broader flow across the palate, more languid in its approach: versus racy acidity. No new oak to bolster, instead it's a flatter, almost waxy style. Citrus, mixed nuts, creamy cashew almost. 

Waxed Meyer lemon bobs along the back palate. Exquisite balance. You’d suggest that winemaker McGlashan has got this where he wants the style to be. 93

Tasted on: Tuesday 6th December, a Root to Flower day
Source: Sample
Price: $35
Alcohol: 12%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: http://ridgemillestate.com/

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Deviation Road Chardonnay 2015

From the Adelaide Hills based, gun winemaking partnership (and partnership) of Hamish and Kate Laurie. Had a great visit there on a cool Autumn day in 2016, good place to visit.

Creamed corn, sour milk, Stonefruit, and something that smells like print developer.

Stonefruit, lime, oak - it's an odd combination and one I couldn't quite get to grips with. There's a subtle minerality, acid. Has a honeyed note, stonefruit, wheat. The quality is there - yet it just doesn't quite gel. 88 

Tasted on: Monday 5th December, a Root day
Source: Sample
Price: $45
Alcohol: 12%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: http://www.deviationroad.com/

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Saturday, 1 April 2017

Pertaringa Two Gentleman's GSM 2015

Unsure of the exact percentages, but a classic Grenache, Shiraz, Mataro here.

Berry driven, fudgey-choc with oak and white pepper seasoning. A thick, chewy wine - fruit forward with oak in support. Nicely balanced with fine tannin, a flash of acidity that brings up a little aniseed. 


Balanced - a good word - if somewhat old school in its form. 90 

Tasted on: Thursday 1st December, a Leaf to Fruit day
Source: Sample
Price: $22
Alcohol: 15%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: http://www.winesbygeoffhardy.com.au/

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Hand Crafted by Geoff Hardy Arneis 2016

Following on from yesterday's Barbera, here another Piedmontese stalwart, this time Arneis from the beautiful Adelaide Hills.

Florals, fleshy yellow nectarine, stonefruit kernel, almond. 

Fleshy, textural, citrus and custard apple. There's a little spike of acidity, provides a second wave of energy, adding length. 89 

Tasted on: Thursday 1st December, a Leaf to Fruit day
Source: Sample
Price: $25
Alcohol: 12.5%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: http://www.winesbygeoffhardy.com.au/

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