Showing posts with label White Wine. Show all posts
Showing posts with label White Wine. Show all posts

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

2015 Brash Higgins 'ZBO' Zibbibo

 Zibbibo is the Southern Italian name for the aromatic Muscat of Alexandria grape. Wine maker Brad Hickey sources the fruit for this wine from Ricca Terra farms in South Australia's Riverland region, winners of the 2015 Gourmet Traveler Wine 'Viticulturist of the Year' award.

The fruit is all hand picked and placed in amphorae, where wild yeast fermentation is allowed to do it's thing. Everything is then left as it is, with the juice staying in contact with seeds and skins for another 5 months. The juice is then hand pressed off into old french barrels, prior to bottling.

This is a wine I look forward to seeing each new vintage, and one of the most interesting and best produced skin contact whites in Australia. Powerful and complex aromatics ranging from the spice cupboard to apricot jam, with so many things difficult to describe. Time on skins and seeds impart a great texture on the palate, with a touch of chalky grip. This wine loves food, and is pairs very well with Korean food, particularly kimchi.

Price:      $40
Source:   Wine Emporium
Varietal:  Zibbibo (Muscat of Alexandria) 
Rating:    94
Website: www.brashhiggins.com

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

2015 Chaffey Brothers Dufte Punkt

Another great vintage of the Dufte Punkt, which tranlates from German into "the aromatic point". This  blend is almost equal parts Riesling and Gewurztraminer, with Weiber Herold accounting for the remaining 20 percent. The Gewurztraminer was given 12 hours of skin contact prior to pressing.

Such a beautiful wine with huge amounts of perfumed aromatics. Plenty of lychee and rose from the Gewurztraminer, along with some lemon and lime citrus notes. Nice dry palate with a good kick of acidity.

The perfect pairing for spicy Thai curries and so many other S.E. Asian dishes. A real crowd pleaser.

Price:      $24
Source:   Chalk and Cheese, West End
Varietal:  Riesling, Gewurztraminer
Tasted:    December 2015
Rating:    94
Website: www.chaffeybroswine.com.au

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

2014 Manners Gewurztraminer

Good clean crisp Gewurztraminer coming from the Mudgee region in New South Whales.

Classic Gewurztraminer nose of lychee and rose petals with plenty of grapefruit and lime. Good dose of citrus acidity on the palate, keeping things nice and dry, not to mention very refreshing. A good Gewurztraminer at this price.

Price:      $20 RRP
Source:   Tasting
Varietal:  Gewurztraminer
Tasted:    December 2015
Rating:    91
Website: www.mannerswine.com.au

Saturday, May 23, 2015

2014 Handorf Hill Grüner Veltliner

Native to Austria, Grüner Veltliner seems to have found a very suitable home in Adelaide Hills. The 2012 vintage of this wine was rated the best Grüner Veltliner outside of Austria, at the 2013 International Grüner Veltliner tasting held in Vienna. I enjoyed this wine on it's own, but could see it being excellent paried with spicy Asian cuisine. 

I get aromas of stone fruit, pineapple,  and wet stone, developing more towards apple and pear on it's second day of being open. A textural wine that stuck to the middle of my tongue in a very pleasing way, with citrus flavors and moderate acidity. I hope to see more of this varietal pop up here in Australia.  

Price:     $28
Source: Cellar Door
Varietal: Grüner Veltliner
Tasted: May 2015
Rating:   94
Website: http://www.hahndorfhillwinery.com.au/

2014 Miles From Nowhere Chardonnay

A good reminder of just how versatile and responsive to wine making technique the  Chardonnay grape can be. You'd be forgiven mistaking this for Sauvignon Blanc the way it is drinking currently.

Some fresh cut grass and green apple aromas sit alongside wet stone and herbaceous notes. A clean palate with mid-level acidity. A touch astringent, I found this much better with food. A good wine considering it's price.

Price:      RRP $18
Source:   VinoMofo 
Varietal:  Chardonnay
Tasted:    May 2015
Rating:    90
Website:  http://www.milesfromnowhere.com.au/

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

2014 Yelland and Papps 'Second Take' Roussanne

Grapes for this wine were all hand picked and sourced from three vineyards in Western Barossa, Greenock and Dorien. 18% of the grapes spent 15 days fermenting on skins, while the rest were fermented in french oak. The wine  spent 9 months in barrels with occasional lees stirring lending to the great texture and aromatic complexity of this wine.

Pours cloudy and smells unlike any Roussanne I've come across. I get poached pear, apple cider, and lemon curd aromas alongside some more savory yeasty elements. A great textural palate with some spicy notes and more pear like fruit. I really enjoyed this. Equal parts interesting and slurpable.

As an aside their cellar door is great. A beautiful, comfortable spot to taste wines and relax. A must visit next time I return to the Barossa. I will leave more time to hang around there, play yard sports and have some food alongside their excellent wines.

Price:      $40
Source:   Cellar Door
Varietal:  Roussanne
Tasted:    May 2015
Rating:    94
Website:  www.yellandandpapps.com

2013 Margan Verdhelo

Winemaker Andrew Margan spent over two decades working at Tyrells before going it his own in the Hunter Valley. Alongside his wife Lisa they now have over 100ha of vines planted.

Opens with a tropical fruit nose featuring pineapple alongside aromas of peach and orange peel. A fairly soft broad palate with medium length and a nice crisp finish. An easy drinking wine well suited for summer days.

Price:      $15
Source:   Dan Murphy's
Varietal:  Verdhelo
Tasted:    May 2015
Rating:    89
Website:  www.margan.com.au

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

2011 Vela Albarino

Another Albarino from Rias Baixis in Spain, coming from the rather difficult 2011 vintage in the region. This wine Spent approximately five months on lees, giving it some savory depth and character.

Apricot and stewed apple on the nose along with some savory yeasty elements. Soft palate with fairly low acidity and somewhat reminiscent of Viognier. This wine was much more interesting with food.

Price:      $20
Source:   Stewart's Wine Co.
Varietal:  Albarino
Tasted:    May 2015
Rating:    89
Website:  www.vela-albarino.com.au

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

2011 Pazo Barrantes Albarino

This wine comes the Spanish region of Rias Baxis, the region best known for the production of Albarino. There seems to be a decent amount of this available in Australia, as I've seen it at a few of the larger retail stores. A good introduction to this grape and wine style.

Soflty aromatic with notes of apricot, cashew, lemon, and wet stone. There are also  hints of some more savory elements, perhaps resulting from some lees contact. A clean dry palate with more lemon and a hint of peach. An all round good value Albarino that is easy to find here in Australia.

Price:      $20
Source:   Dan Murphy's
Varietal:  Albarino
Tasted:    May 2015
Rating:    92
Website:  www.pazobarrantes.com.

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

2012 Tscharke 'Girl Talk' Savignin

Savignin  is a grape closely related to Gewurztraminer, Traminer, and Albarino which has made proper identification a little bit confusing. An excellent article by James Halliday on the history of this grape can be found here.

Originally brought to Australia in 1832 by James Busby, the grapes for this wine, as well as some others around Australia, were imported by the viticultural arm of CSIRO and were thought to be Albarino. It wasn't until an expert in grape identification from France (an ampelographer) toured some Australian vineyards and noticed that it more closely resembled Savignin than Albarino, that the grape wines were reclassified.

The confusion is quite understandable when you taste this wine, as it really is reminiscent of a nice Albarino. Smells of pear, lemon, wet stone, and perhaps a whiff of honey. A nice clean, dry wine with a good lick of acidity. I've had a couple of bottles of this now, and am sure to have more.

Price:      $20
Source:   Dan Murphy's
Varietal:  Savignin
Tasted:    May 2015
Rating:    94
Website:  www.tscharke.com.au

Thursday, May 7, 2015

2014 Pressing Matters R9 Riesling

Last year when I was down helping out at Bass Phillip during vintage, winemaker Phil Jones was sayingt how good Tasmanian Riesling was getting. The year following I tried a few, but none of them really hit it for me. So, this year I asked Phil to recommend a particular wine and this is the one he recommended.

While still quite young, this is such a clean and crisp wine, showing so much potential for aging. Talk about bright, clean acidity. Some tropical fruit notes when I first opened it, fading away to more wet stone and lemon-lime aromas. Excellent palate length.

 Price:      $33
Source:   Cool Wines, Hobart
Varietal:  Riesling
Tasted:    May 2015
Rating:    94+++
Website:  www.pressingmatters.com.au

Monday, May 4, 2015

2013 Yabby Lake 'Red Claw' Pinot Gris

The Red Claw range from Mornington Peninsula's Yabby Lake consists of their entry level wines, many of which offer good value and are generally quite easy to track down. Fruit is sourced from the Yabby Lake estate vineyard, whole bunch pressed, and left for extended lees contact.

Tropical fruit and citrus aromas develop over a short period of time into softer aromas of pear and apple, with underlying notes of honey and spice. Time spent on lees is noticeable with hints of fresh baked bread. A nice soft mid length palate with mild acidity. An all round good Mornington Peninsula Pinot Gris that is readily available in many bottle shops.

Price:      $20
Source:   Chalk and Cheese, West End
Varietal:  Pinot Gris
Tasted:    April 2015
Rating:    92
Website:  www.yabbylake.com

2014 Unico Zelo Muscat d’Alessandria

Sourced from 70 year old bush vines from Ricca Terra Farms in the Riverland region, this wine saw three days of skin contact and underwent barrel fermentation. A wonderfully textural wine, that developed while drinking.

I got wafts of peaches and apricots, with more soft fruit flavors delivered on the palate. Has managed to maintain a freshness, reminiscent of must shortly after pressing. Such an interesting texture and subtly creamy mouthfeel. Great value, particularly for this style of wine. 

Price:      $20
Source:   Different Drop
Varietal:  Muscat d’Alessandria
Tasted:    April 2015
Rating:    94
Website:  www.unicozelo.com.au

Sunday, May 3, 2015

2014 Symphony Hill Gewürztraminer

While Symphony Hill is located in the Granite Belt wine region in Queensland, the grapes for this particular wine have been sourced from New England, a region South of the Granite Belt in New South Whales. 

Plenty of tropical fruit and lychee on the nose, with a hint of rose petal and pink grapefruit. Nice soft palate with wonderfully length and complexity. Refreshing acidity helps this wine finish well. An all round delicious wine.

Price:      $40
Source:   Cru Bar and Cellar
Varietal:  Gewürztraminer
Tasted:    April 2015
Rating:    94
Website:  www.symphonyhill.com.au

2013 Dopff Au Moulin Gewürztraminer

A classic Gewürztraminer from the French region of Alsace, this wine delivers very well for this price. It's hard to pass this one up when thinking of getting a wine to have with spicy asian cuisine, such as Thai or Vietnamese. 

Quite aromatic, with plenty of lychee, rose petal, and hints of grapefruit. Nice clean acidity and a mild sweetness help this wine pair well with a bit of heat. I've grabbed this a couple of times now and will surely consider it again when looking for a  fairly inexpensive bottle to have with Thai or Vietnamese food.

Price:      $20
Source:   Dan Murphy's
Varietal:  Gewürztraminer
Tasted:    April 2015
Rating:    92
Website:  http://www.dopff-au-moulin.fr/

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

2013 Vasse Felix Chardonnay

Recently Vasse Felix have ben producing some of the best Chardonnays from the Margaret River region, and in all of Australia for that matter . This wine is their mid-level offering falling in between the Filius and Heytesbury and offers fantastic bang for buck.

Delicate white peach, mineral and cashew aromas with some complex brioche like nuances. Seamlessly integrated palate offering some more peach flavors and finishing with a touch a citrus. A very clean and elegant chardonnay, with subtle oak influences.

I tasted this alongside several Chardonnays that were at least twice its price and was blown away by how well this wine stood up.

Excellent value at this price.

Price:     $33
Source:  Wine Emporium
Varietal: Chardonnay
Tasted:  January 2015
Rating:   96

Friday, December 19, 2014

2008 Pewseyvale Eden Valley Riesling

Pewseyvale sits 250 meters above the floor of the barossa valley, providing a slightly cooler climate ideal for Riesling production. The Pewseyvale winery is one of the oldest in Australia and said to be Eden Valley's first vineyard. They are also one of the most consistent high quality Riesling producers in the country and have produced many of the best Australian Riesling I've tried.

The 2008 is drinking beautifully right now. Starting to develop a small amount of aged Riesling aromas, which sit beautifully alongside aromas of lemon, lime, and hints of tropical fruit. Great refreshing acidity and minerality to this wine.

A fantastic bargain at this price point. I can't believe how good Australian Riesling generally is for the small price tag it so often carries.

Price:     $23
Source:  Dan Murphy's
Varietal: Riesling
Tasted:  December 2014
Rating:   94

Monday, December 15, 2014

2011 Frogmore Creek Iced Riesling

An Australian ice wine? Being Canadian I've tried my fare share of ice wines. In the Niagara region of Canada most ice wine producers wait until there are three days in a row where the temperatures stay below -8 degrees Celsius. While it's a bit cooler in Tasmania than many other parts of Australia, they still require freezing units to produce their ice wine. I think this difference in production yields a slightly different product.

The first thing I noticed about this wine was that it was less syrupy than other ice wines I've had. Great aromas of apple blossoms and orange zest, followed by sweet but not cloying flavors of green apple and honey. Lacks some of the interesting elements I expect from an ice wine, which likely develop from the extended hang time prior to picking in Canada and Germany.

Worth noting that this is available at a fraction of the price of any good German, Austrian, or Canadian ice wines. Given the option, however, I'll take a good Aussie botrytis over any of these.

All in all, great way to end a meal. I'd pair this with a good quality, mild blue cheese.

Price:     $23
Source: Gift
Varietal: Riesling
Tasted:  December
Rating:   90
Website: http://www.frogmorecreek.com.au/

2013 Tahbilk 'The Tower' MVR

MVR is a blend of Mouvedre, Viognier, and Rousanne; all white grapes from the Rhone Valley in France. Tahbilk is well known for the quality or it's Marsanne, and the fact that it is one of Australia's most consistent and best value white wines. Their Tower series of wines are the first from Tahbilk to be certified carbon neutral.

The viognier is distinctly noticeable on the nose, offering aromas of stone fruit and baked apple, alongside some citrus notes. A lovely savory pallet with a somewhat slippery texture and a fairly crisp and clean finish. I quite enjoyed drinking this wine, however it wasn't much of a hit with the friends I shared this one with.

Paired well with Manchego and seared prawns. I'll buy this again, but not for sharing with guests. I think the Viognier is a bit unusual for some, and is maybe an acquired taste.

Price:     $15
Source:  Dan Murphy's
Varietal: Mouvedre, Marsanne, Viognier
Tasted:  December
Rating:   90
Website: www.tahbilk.com.au

Monday, November 24, 2014

2014 Yalumba Y Series Vermentio

Yalumba Y Series Vermentino 750mLMy favorite of the Yalumba Y series wines I've tried  and certainly one of the best Australian white wines in the under $15 price range. 

Very light in color, it pours almost transparent. Quite aromatic, with plenty of tropical fruit and citrus aromas.  An easy drinking wine, with clean, crisp acidity and plenty of lemon and lime flavors.   

A great bargain that seems to be readily available at plenty of bottle shops. I have a feeling I'll be drinking a few more bottles of this over the summer.  

Price:     $13
Source:  The Cellar, Bangalow
Varietal: Vermentino
Tasted:  November 2014
Rating:   92
Website: www.yalumba.com