Sunday, February 12, 2017

2016 La Linea Mencia

Image result for la linea menciaMencia is a fairly new grape varietal to hit the shores of Australia. Back in its home in the north-west of Spain, it is often used to make light bodied, heavily perfumed wines, ideal for drinking in their youth.

This particular effort comes from a gravelly loam vineyard in Lenswood, and is the first Mencia planting in the Adelaide Hills. Hand picked fruit was fermented without the addition of yeast and sees only old french oak, resulting in a fruit forward wine, drinking very well in it's youth.

An intensely perfumed wine with cherry at the forefront and floral aromas that make it just so pretty and complex. Tannins are soft and powdery, which juxtaposes the juicy red fruit and soft acidity of this wine, oh so well.

This wine is everything I hoped Mencia could be in Australia and it appears the Adelaide Hills may be well suited for the varietal.

Price: $30
Varietal: Mencia
Would I Buy It?: Yes. Tasted as a sample at work, and brought one home for dinner.
Website: www.lalinea.com.au

Thursday, June 9, 2016

2015 Hoddles Creek Chardonnay

Winemaker Franco D'Anna has been producing great value Pinot Noir and Chardonnay in the Yarra Valley for several years now, and the release of these wines has become greatly anticipated by many, including myself, seeking to get top quality wines at a great price.

Fruit for the Chardonnay under the Hoddle's Creek range comes from the home estate, where it  is all hand picked and fermented on site.

Great fresh and clean chardonnay aromatics of apricot, white peach, and grapefruit. A touch of struck match. Delicate with a bit of slatey minerality. Great line of acidity. Delicious stuff.

Price: $22
Varietal: Chardonnay
Would I Buy It?: Absolutely. Great value for money.
Website: www.hoddlescreekestate.com


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 SC Pannell Aromatico

I sure do love a good blend of aromatic white wine varietals. They tend to really suit these warmer summer months, as well as my penchant for spicy S.E. Asian dishes. This one comes from one of Australia's most celebrated wine makers S.C. Pannell, who has been producing a lot of great wines over the past few years. This one is a blend of Riesling, Gewurztraminer, and Pinot Gris.

Aromas of lychee and rosewater alongside lime and a hint of pear. The palate is clean with citrus tang and maybe a touch of saline character, which adds some nice complexity.

Overall, a fun, delicious, and crowd pleasing wine.

Price:      $25
Source:   Wine Emporium
Varietal:  Riesling, Gewurztraminer, Pinot Gris  
Tasted:    December 2015
Rating:    94
Website: www.pannell.com.au

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

2013 Kooyong Clonale Chardonnay

This is the entry level Chardonnay from Kooyong range of Port Phillip Estate, in the Mornington Peninsula.

Lemon, lime, and wet stone aromas. A chalky, fine, and tightly wound palate which rounds out with bright cleansing acidity.

Nice clean chardonnay at a fair price.

Price:      $30
Source:   Chalk and Cheese, West End
Varietal:  Chardonnay
Tasted:    December 2015
Rating:    92
Website: www.portphillipestate.com.au

2014 Soumah 'Single Vineyard' Brachetto

Soumah are based in the Yarra Valley where they focus on Northern Italian style wines, alongside some of the Eastern French styles more common in this area. The Brachetto grape originates from Piedmont region of Northwest Italy and is commonly used to make a slightly sweet sparkling wine in the DOCG region of Brachetto D'aqui.

Here these grapes have been used to produce a sweet, still wine with great aromatic intensity. It opens up with distinct notes of strawberry and roses. The palate is less sweet than many other dessert wines (certainly less sweet than most botrytis wines or other stickies) and is nicely balanced with a touch of acidity. 

An all round interesting and enjoyable wine. Ideal for pairing with desserts, particularly fruit and/or not-too-sweet cakes. 

Price:      $29 RRP
Source:   Tasting
Varietal:  Brachetto
Tasted:    December 2015
Rating:    93
Website: www.soumah.com.au