Friday, October 30, 2009

Wandin Valley Estate 2009 Verdelho

Summer is on the way and there could be few better choices for quaffing on a sunny afternoon than this fresh and vibrant white from an under-rated Hunter Valley winery. You'll find tropical fruit salad aromas and flavours in this rich and full-bodied - but also extremely refreshing - wine which has lively acid on the finish. Drink it young, drink it chilled and also look out for the equally impressive 2009 semillon. Talented young winemaker Matt Burton is one to watch. $20.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Cullen 2007 Kevin John Chardonnay

This has to be one of the most impressive chardonnay releases of the year. Vanya Cullen's biodynamic vineyards in Margaret River have produced a wonderfully balanced wine from a very good year. The grapes were hand harvested, sorted and whole-bunch pressed and the fruit spent 10 months in new and 2nd year French oak. The end result: a wine of elegance and intensity with citrus characters to the fore. Stunningly good and well worth $70.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

The Prince 2007 Merlot

A new label to me from the promising Vino Bambino stable, which has some excellent small producers on its books. There are so many dud Australian merlots around it's a real pleasuree to discover one like this attractive offering from Victoria's Pyrenees district. OK, it's soft and fleshy as you'd expect, but there's also some nice ripe berry characters and some complexity, too. This is a lovely barbecue wine and well priced at $20.

Monday, October 12, 2009

The Story 2008 Grampians Shiraz

Rory Lane is the former marketing manager for Shelmerdine who has struck out on his own and is making some excellent wines using fruit from Victoria’s cool-climate Grampians region ( There are two individual vineyard wines for around $45, but this suits me just fine, thank you, with lovely fruit and some real elegance on the palate. Natural yeast, unfiltered, unfined, sensible alcohol (13.5%) - and absolutely terrific. $24.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Wirra Wirra 2008 Church Block

The 06, 07 and 2008 vintages of this excellent McLaren Vale blend are all of stellar quality with the 08 an absolute ripper - vibrant and fruity with plenty of depth of flavour. It's a plush and delicious blend of cabernet sauvignon, shiraz and merlot that is superb value for money and the good news is if the 08 hasn't reached your local bottle store yet, the 07 (briary with good tannins) is also drinking very well right now. Perfect with a good steak or Wagyu burger. $23.