Thursday, July 27, 2023

Pewsey Vale 2023 Eden Valley Riesling

Meet one of Australia's riesling icons from an obsessively tended vineyard on the slopes of the cool Eden Valley. This is a long-time favourite that remains one of Australia's best white wine bargains. The new-release 2023 vintage wine lives up to the brand's stellar reputation and is joined by four siblings in an expanded range: The Contours Riesling 10-Year Museum Release; 1961 Block Riesling 2022; Prima Riesling 2022 and the Lighter Riesling 9%. All are very reasonably priced and offer a selection of age, sweetness and alcohol options - something for everyone. I'd enjoy this one well chilled, in its youth, perhaps with some whitebait, a prawn pizza, or a Thai stir-fry. There are floral notes, some green herb hints and lashings of zesty citrus flavours, and crisp, dry finish. Super delicious. $27.

Thursday, July 20, 2023

Hay Shed Hill 2021 Cabernet Merlot

The new 2021 red releases from Hay Shed Hill offer such good value across the board that it was difficult to choose which one to highlight. I really enjoyed the savouriness of the shiraz tempranillo blend, and the straight cabernet sauvignon also shone at a slightly higher price point. This cabernet merlot - a blend of mainly estate fruit and some growers' grapes - offers a whole lot of Margaret River drinking pleasure for such a low price that it is hard to ignore. Everyone needs a few bottles of a wine like this at home for when friends drop around and you want to pair a red with a barbecue, pizza or pasta. It's rich and flavoursome but medium-bodied and possesses some elegance. How winemaker Michael Kerrigan does it for the price I have no idea, but we should all be very grateful. $20-22.  

Thursday, July 13, 2023

Burton McMahon 2022 George's Vineyard Chardonnay


Matt Burton from Gundog Estate and Dylan McMahon from Seville Estate are outstanding winemakers in their own right - but the two close friends also combine each year to produce an outstanding range of limited-release wines from the Yarra Valley. This is one of the standouts; a thoroughly modern chardonnay that ticks both key boxes with varietal flavours and impressive balance. George's Vineyard is the cool Upper Yarra and produces wines with purity and just a little cocky swagger. Think stone fruit flavours, mineral hints, and very bright acid. Pair this with a grilled pork chop for a perfect wine/food partnership. $50.  

Thursday, July 6, 2023

Taylors 2021 Jaraman Cabernet Sauvignon


Single-vineyard wines may be all the range but there is still a place for multi-regional blends such as this one from reliably reliable Taylors. It is a blend of vigorous Clare Valley fruit and more structured Coonawarra grapes that delivers in spades for red wine lovers looking for flavour allied to balance. Think blackcurrant, powerful but well-judged oak adding a cigar box note, and elegant tannin structure. A good match for just about any red meat dish, particularly winter casseroles. We paired it with a classic English toad-in-the-hole. The RRP is $34 but this is a wine that can sometimes be found at a lower price point. Look out for specials or club deals.