Friday, October 22, 2010

Dance With The Devil 2010 White

An unusual blend of sauvignon blanc and chenin blanc from Devil's Lair chief winemaker Oliver Crawford, who is doing some very good things in Margaret River. The tropical fruit characters of the sauvignon prove a good foil for the acidity and green apple flavours of the chenin blanc. While intended as a "drink young" style it also has enough backbone to cellar for a year or two as it is still quite taut and tart. Enjoy this well chilled with grilled sardines or roast pork and crackling $25.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Clairault 2008 Estate Chardonnay

The 2007 edition of this classy Margaret River chardonnay went on a medal rampage and quickly sold out. Hence the 2008 is in the marketplace a little earlier than usual - and in reduced quantities following a difficult vintage that saw yields dramatically down. It's quite a big, bold wine in a chardonnay spectrum that has swung dramatically towards tight, minerally styles but it has more than enough panache to hold its own against more elegant rivals with its assertive stone-fruit characters, nutty and toasty nuances and a tight acid finish. A wine of structure and complexity that's a bit of a throwback but no less worthy for that. $35.

Friday, October 8, 2010

DryRidge Estate 2010 Blue Mountains Riesling

Who would have expected to find a vineyard in the Blue Mountains? And who would have considered the possibility it would produce an outstanding riesling? Not me, that's for sure. On a recent visit I stumbled across DryRidge Estate, which is tucked away off the scenic Six Foot Track in the delightful Megalong Valley and has an emininetly suitable micro-climate. Grower Bob Tyrrell (no relation to the Hunter Tyrrells) has his wine made by talented Canowindra-based Frenchman Chris Derrez. It ticks all the dry riesling boxes with citrus aromas, zingy lemon and lime on the palate and plenty of minerality and zesty acid. The perfect wine for an options game, or for enjoying with grilled sardines and other seafood dishes. $22.50.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Innocent Bystander 2008 Sangiovese

It is no wonder sangiovese is growing in popularity in Australia. Bright fruit and savoury notes make the Tuscan grape extremely food-friendly. This is made from McLaren Vale fruit from a difficult hot year, but weighs in at just 13.7% alcohol. It's a blend of 90% sangiovese with 10% merlot added for softness and mouthfeel. You'll find succulent dark berry characters, hints of olives and spice and some down and dirty earthiness (a good thing). It's medium-bodied with great tannin structure and would be terrific paired with rich pasta dishes, or a real Italian pizza. Available online at $20.