Pinot noir is a most capricious grape, recalcitrant in the vineyard and sometime truculent in the winery. That is why the best examples, like this excellent new release, are so prized. There can be plenty of disappointments for pinotphiles, but this is one of the best releases from Yering Station in the Yarra Valley; aromatic and silky and bursting with bright fruit, allied to classy French oak. This is downright delicious right now and will almost certainly age gracefully. $40.
Wednesday, April 22, 2015
Plantagenet's departing winemaker Cath Oates describes 2013 as a “great chardonnay vintage” in Western Australia's Great Southern and this wine underlines that with its seamless quality; bright citrus notes, hints of yeast from indigenous fermentation and classy French oak, which is beautifully integrated. There is an intensity and creaminess here that pinpoints this as a wine that will blossom when paired with food. $35.
Friday, April 10, 2015
A superb example of briary, juicy southern Rhone village red from Stephane Vedeau, one of the premier vignerons of this beautful region. A blend of 80% grenache and 20% syrah from organically farmed vineyards with old vines, this is bursting with dark red fruit flavours and spice notes. It is a big wine in the French scheme of things but very well balanced and drinkable even its youth. It is imported by Single Vineyard Sellers. $58. www.singlevineyards.com.
Thursday, April 2, 2015
Franco d'Anna from Hoddles Creek is an extremely versatile winemaker. As well as producing wines that over-deliver in quality for both the Wickhams Road and Hoddles Creek labels, he also crafts small quantities of very classy boutique wines under the playful 1er Yarra Valley banner; poking of fun at the grandoise labels of the great wines of Burgundy. What is in the bottle here has certain parallels with Burgundy; it is lean at 13.2% alcohol, has classic vibrancy and intensity (think citrus and flint) and is made without fining, filtering or additions, letting the fruit write the narrative. If this was Burgundy, though, you'd be paying a substantial whack more than $40. Bargain. www.hoddlescreekestate.com.au.