Saturday, November 24, 2012

Folding Hill 2010 Pinot Noir

Born on the Isle of Man, Tim Kerruish is one of those people who make the world of wine so fascinating. After a stint working in Australia as a doctor he went to New Zealand on a fishing trip, loved it and eventually moved to Bendigo in Central Otago, bought a 40-acre sheep farm in partnership with friends and family and planted 10 acres of pinot noir - most of which he sells. He works in the local ER "to pay the bills" but still has time to produce outstanding wines like this tight, intense and textural 2010 pinot, matured in quality French oak, unfilterred and unfined and bottled under a Diam closure. It's a damn fine drop, built for the long haul, that blossoms when given some air. Well worth seeking out - and soon to be distributed in Australia by Winestock. $NZ40.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Longview 2012 Queenie Adelaide Hills Pinot Grigio

Wow! I really like the vibrancy of this wine, which is, quite remarkably, the first-ever pinot grigio release from the Saturno family's immaculately tended Adelaide Hills vineyard. Named after the family matriarch, who travelled from Friuli in northern Italy to the Adelaide Hills in the 1930s and is now 90 years of age, the sheer freshness and liveliness of this fruit-driven number might hopefully convert some of the critics who are dismissive of PG as a style. If a bright, flavoursome white that is both refreshing and rewarding appeals, wrap your lips around some of this. It's already started to pick up show gold medals - if that sort of thing floats your boat. $19.50.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Eldridge Estate 2012 PTG

Is there a more perfect style of red wine for daytime summer enjoyment? I doubt it. I loved the debut 2011 version of Eldridge Estate's PTG, a homage to the passetoutgrains of Burgundy, which are  blends of gamay and pinot noir grapes. The 2012 edition is, if anything, even more impressive. Juicy and fruity, it's a rollicking, buccaneering Mornington Peninsula red that can easily stand being chilled. A super-drinkable and immensely enjoyable red that would be a lovely match with Asian-style pork belly, it is a simple wine, with bright raspberry and cheery cherry notes, designed for enjoying young. The empty bottle never lies. Well done David and Wendy Lloyd. $25.       

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Zema Estate 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon

The Zema family has been growing grapes and making wine in Coonawarra for three decades now - and their offerings are a byword for consistency and value. All the wines are estate grown, vintaged and bottled. With winemaker Greg Clayfield showing a deft touch, this is an outstanding Coonawarra cabernet with ripe, inviting aromas leading on to an inky palate with dark fruit flavours, chocolate and tobacco leaf notes with well-integrated French oak. Tannins and acids are perfectly in place, like well-behaved schoolchildren. In fact, there is nothing at all unruly about a wine that is both varietal and regional. It's drinking brilliantly now but will cellar for a decade or more. Pair it with roast lamb en croute, $30.