Thursday, October 26, 2023

Vasse Felix 2021 Cabernet Sauvignon

This is the milestone 50th vintage of a Margaret River classic. Made every year since 1972; it's a classy, complex and totally composed wine that that possesses all the hallmarks of| top-notch Margaret River Cabernet Sauvignon, although in this case there is 14% of sturdy malbec in the blend. While the premium Vasse Felix cabernets are designed for the long haul, this can be enjoyed on release, albeit with food to be enjoyed at its best. It underwent 100% whole wild ferment and spent 17 months in new and one-year-old French barriques. There is plenty happening on the palate but it finishes with some smooth and sassy style. This would be great lamb chops, or a Mediterranean vegetable tart.

Thursday, October 19, 2023

Soumah 2023 Pinot Grigio


Summer is just around the corner and every white wine lover would welcome a few bottles of this calibre in the fridge. A single vineyard wine from one of the most under-rated wineries in the Yarra Valley, this is the perfect choice for pairing with summer dishes ranging from fish and chips to chicken salads. With a pinkish grey tinge, it has bright natural acidity, pear and tropical flavours and bright zestiness due to tank fermentation. Palate interest has been added by lees stirring, but this is made in the vibrant Italian style, designed for enjoying lightly chilled in its youth. Fresh, lively and affordable, too,. $28.  

Thursday, October 12, 2023

d'Arenberg 2021 The Footbolt Shiraz

At a time when many wine drinkers are watching their pennies, here is a classic bright and juicy McLaren Vale red that offers good drinking at a very fair price. If you are planning a barbecue, or having a few mates around, then this ripe and very slurpable red will certainly deliver. It is medium-bodied + with dark plummy and berry fruits, just a hint of spice and with restrained oak. It finishes soft and smooth and was a very complementary companion to a midweek steak and kidney pie. It would probably cellar well over the next decade but I'd be necking a bottle now, while it is still vibrantly fruity. Should you be wondering, Footbolt was a racehorse owned by Joseph Osborn over 100 years ago. He was sold so the family could purchase the d'Arenberg property, which they own to this day. $22.

Thursday, October 5, 2023

Grosset 2023 Alea Off-Dry Riesling

Choices. Choices. It is accepted wisdom that the Grosset Polish Hill and Springvale rieslings are among Australia's finest. Benchmark wines - and the 2023 releases are once again exceptional. But the third riesling in the Grosset line-up, the off-dry Alea, trends to fly a little under the radar, often in the shadows of its acclaimed Clare Valley kin. This year, the Alea is particularly fine and elegant, unashamedly European accented and a perfect foil for lightly spiced dishes from Vietnam or Thailand. It is a single-site wine, organic and biodynamic with pronounced florals leading the way to a fresh pure palate with enough fruit sweetness to differentiate from its stablemates, while having the same citrus/Granny Smith and mineral appeal. Lovely stuff. $52.