2nd Nov 2010: New offerings from Schwarz Wine Co
You guys have no idea how tough it is living in Melbourne's scorching 28
degrees. I need a quick chill off, reaching into the new-arrivals box, it's
The Dust Kicker Rosé by Schwarz. Pale salmon colour,
youthful nose of redcurrants and crushed baby leaf buds. Dry, medium-bodied
wine with flavours of whole redcurrant bunches with leaves and a hint of
raspberry concentrated on the front palate and tip of the tongue. High
acidity and 13% alc. Great comfort as you put on your sunnies and bask in
the warm sunshine as a cool breeze passes through. $17. Have with generous
serve of saganaki with half a lemon's worth of juice squeezed on top. Drink
Schwarz Wine Co Dust Kicker Chenin Blanc 2010, Barossa Valley, SA
$17 from Jason Schwarz himself. Pale gold with green hues. Apple
talc with sweet lemon barley brew. Dry, high acidity, youthful rich, clean
green apple, unripe stone fruit peachy flavours with a nice steely mineral finish. 12% alc. Drink now.
Schwarz Wine Co Dust Kicker Hunt & Gather 2007, Barossa Valley, SA
$20. Medium+ earthy ruby crimson colour. This Barossan blend has
lovely carpet of aromas with sweet spice, clove, dark plum, blackcurrant
liquorice, and a hint of oak (seasoned?) in the back. Dry, full-bodied wine
with a velvety texture propped by fine tannins. High level of fresh acidity,
the plush fruit is clear and present, cherry liquor and spicy plum. Drink
now - 2015. 92/100.
|Schwarz Wine Co
Thiele Road Grenache 2007, Barossa Valley, SA
$26. Medium+ ruby with crimson/garnet sheen. Fine legs.
Youthful, warm aromas of strawberry florals, savoury red currants
and hints of weighty milk chocolate. This dry, full-bodied wine has
a silky texture with fine grained tannins, medium acidity. The 15%
alc is not overtly prominent, there is plenty of scrumptious juicy
fruit, strawberry, cherry flesh and red plums. Lovely comfortable
finish. Drink now - 2015. 91/100.
Schwarz Wine Co. Nitschke Block Shiraz 2007,
Barossa Valley, SA
$32. Intense black ruby with crimson rim. Youthful compact perfume
of dark, black berry fruit, cloves, touch of deglazed saucepan, brown meat
savouriness. Dry, full-bodied wine with 15% alc, medium+ velvety tannins
evenly distributed throughout the mouth. Rich flavours of black plum,
blueberry fruit. Long finish. Drink now - 2018. 92/100.
Schwarz Wine Co. Schiller Shiraz 2008, Barossa
$60. 50 dozen bottles. A step up in purity from the Nitschke shiraz. Black core with
dark ruby-purple rum, fine legs with the colour clinging to the glass. Warm
aromas of dark, concentrated berry fruit, hint of white pepper, black plums,
hot dusty red earth, sweet nutmeg and cinnamon. Dry, full-bodied wine, silky
texture with chocolatey even chewy tannins, high acidity and 15% alc. Lovely
rich purple fruit, blueberry, plums, hint of raspberry liquorice. Soft, long
finish. Drink now - 2022. 93-94/100.
3rd Nov 2010: New releases from Glaetzer
Glaetzer Wallace Shiraz Grenache 2009, Barossa
$25. Fruit from 60-80 year old vines. The grenache was fermented
and kept in stainless steel tanks to retain maximal freshness and fruit
characters. This was blended with shiraz matured in 2-3 year old French and
American (70/30) oak barrels. Medium crimson colour. On the nose, notes of
coconut shavings from the French oak is prominent. Behind this is dark red
berry fruit. Dry, full-bodied wine with flavours of black cherry, dark
raspberry and red currants. Good value for an easy drinking wine. Drink now
- 2015. 89/100.
Glaetzer Bishop Shiraz 2009, Barossa Valley,
$35. A blend of fruit from 35 and 120 year old vines, combining the
freshness and vibrancy of young fruit with the structure and mellow weight
imparted by age. Medium+ ruby colour, this has a youthful nose but one
does get a sense that there is depth to this fledgling. Asian 5 spice,
cloves, dark plum skins. Dry, full-bodied with a good balance of weighty
black fruit with the ripe acidity and tannins. Good long finish. Drink now -
Glaetzer Anaperenna Shiraz Cabernet 2009,
Barossa Valley, SA$55. This label was not released in 2008. In 2009, it is a 75/25
blend of shiraz and cabernet sauvignon from 30-120 year old vines. The
cabernet vines suffered from the 2008 heat waves and as a consequence
struggled during the growing months for the 2009 vintage. This resulted in
reduced fruit yields and hence only a small volume of Anaperenna 2009 has
been produced. Medium+ ruby colour. A youthful nose of blackcurrant
liquorice, finger-crushed fresh herbs, plums and a touch of sweet bakes.
Full-bodied, high acidity and even tannins across the palate. Expected a bit
more on the fruit weight but this is still in its infancy with young plums
and crushed blackcurrants. Good finish with the fruit essence lingering.
Drink 2012 - 2020. 92+/100.
Gaetzer Amon Ra Shiraz 2009, Barossa Valley,
SA$95. This is my second tasting of the 09 Amon Ra. 100% dry grown
shiraz from 50-130 year old vines and matured in French and American (90/10)
oak hogsheads. Notice the move away from the 100% American oak approach
employed in previous incarnations? Dark ruby purplish colour. A heady fresh,
youthful aroma of black plums, blackcurrants and hint of black truffles.
Full-bodied with clean, dense ripe fruit flavours of spicy dark plum flesh
and blackcurrants. Even fine tannins, almost cocoa-powder like texture, is
well-balanced with fresh acidity. Good long finish. This is a welcome move
away from the highly dense and thick over-extracted fruit in the past. Drink
2012 - 2025. 94-95/100.
15th Nov 2010
It is simply so predictable of Melbourne that the sunny warm weather never
lasts for long. Just as I kicked back to knock back some Rieslings in the
park, it's turned wet, overcast and grey skies over the weekend. Still, jot
down the names of these 2009 beauties from Germany and you won't be
disappointed when the hot summer sun finally overcomes the cold gloom.
Gunderloch Jean Baptiste Riesling Kabinett
2009, Rheinhessen, Germany$30 from Prince Wine Store. Pale lemon colour with aromas of lemon
citrus and crushed apple ferment similar to Spanish cider. Clean apple
flavours with fresh acidity and good overall balance. Drink now. 88/100.
Georg Breuer GB Riesling 2009, Mosel, Germany$35 from Prince Wine Store. Delicate perfumed nose of pear and
orange spritz. Dry, high acidity and very flavoursome with notes of sweet
apple, brown pear finished with a touch of steely minerality. Drink now.
Donnhoff Riesling Trocken 2009, Nahe, Germany
$38 from Prince Wine Store. Pale golden lemon colour with
an elegant yet complex aromas of lingering florals and citrus
blossom. Dry, clean acidity, touch of grip on the palate. Drink now.
A. Christmann Riesling QBA 2009, Pfalz,
$40 from Prince Wine Store. Pale lemon colour with notes of unripe
apricot and white peach skin. Ripe and rich peachy flavours, high acidity
and lovely length on the finish. Drink now. 89/100.
17th Nov 2010
Wirra The Lost Watch Hand-picked Riesling 2010, Adelaide Hills, SA
Pale lemon colour, youthful aromas of orange blossom and
lemon slate powder. Dry, medium-bodied wine, 13%alc, with rich
orange citrus flavours and waxy kaffir lime leaves on the finish.
Long fruity finish. Drink now. 90/100.
Ca'dei Mandorli Brachetto D'acqui 'Le Donne
Dei Boschi' 2009
Recommended by Nico at Randall's Albert Park. ~$20. If you love
Moscato d'Asti, then you'll love this more robust version made from the
Brachetto grape. Medium purple crimson colour, youthful soft aromas of
blackcurrants, rose petal florals. Delicious blackcurrant and rose syrup
flavours, the dry pastille sweetness and acidity retain the zip and keeps
the freshness in your mouth. If Moscato d'Asti is a shy 6-year old little girl,
then this Brachetto is the unbashful and talkative 10-year old cutie. Drink
now (and heaps) 90/100.
24th Nov 2010
||Chateau Paul Mas
Clos des Mures 2008, Coteax Du Languedoc, France
$19 from Dan Murphy's. Intense black garnet with watery
purple rim. Lingering perfume that is dense in nature of black
cherry, blackcurrants, violets and sweet spice. Dry, full-bodied
wine with high acidity and medium level of soft tannins. Strong
black fruit flavours provide a punch that allows this wine to sit
quite comfortably next to a prime rib-eye steak with mushroom sauce.
Good value for money, perfect for your bbq'd meat stacks this
summer. Drink now. 88/100.
25th Nov 2010
Bleasdale Shiraz Cabernet 2005, Langhorne
A blend of 51% shiraz and 49% cabernet sauvignon. This spent 12
months maturing in old French and American oak barrels. Intense dark ruby
core with a significant watery purplish-garnet rim. A sensation of hot South
Australian summer wind blowing along the dusty gravel roads intermingled
with aromas of ripe plum, blackberries and hints of tobacco, wood spice.
Dry, full-bodied wine with high acidity, 14.5% alc and nicely resolved
tannins. Fresh ripe black berry flavours that linger on the tip of your
tongue. Right now, this is a very good example of an entry level yet
well-made wine that is fully mature. Drink now - 2012. 88/100.
26th Nov 2010
Knappstein Riesling 2010, Clare Valley, SA
$19 from King & Godfrey on Lygon St. Pale lemon colour with
a green tinge. Youthful aromas of musky lemon talc, hint of
passionfruit. Dry, medium-bodied wine with a zip to the body. High
acidity with rich, ripe lime citrus overtones on green apple
flavours. Good fruity finish. Drink now. 89/100.
28th Nov 2010
Riesling 2010, Eden Valley, SA
Pale lemon colour, with youthful nose of clean steely lemon, crushed
calcium carbonate rock, pineapple juice and a hint of flint.
Intensely flavoured wine with high acidity. Amazing rich, ripe lemon
pulp and lime acidity, with linger ripe pineapple. Long finish. If
you're looking for a riesling with the pomp and circumstance of the
Austrian royal courts in summer, well this is it! An aristocratic
structure, well-balanced and kept in check by the men-in-waiting.
Drink now - 2013, then keep till 2020 before finishing it off.
29th Nov 2010: Le Beaujolais Nouveau est arrivé!
There is the Beaujolais, and there is the Beaujolais. Try to look past the
common shudder that emanates down your spine as you recall the massive
hangover the day after Beaujolais Nouveau chugging is declared in New York
City or Washington DC. The Beaujolais region and indeed the Gamay grape has
a spectrum more to offer than the 3€ excuse to
have a good time. As I chase the brilliant 2009 vintage of Chateauneuf du
Pape, I remind myself that excellent quality wines are also available from
other regions of France. Even regions less associated with quality, partly
reflected in the cheaper price tags, are all excited over 2009 releases.
I don't need to heap further praise upon the 2009 vintage of Beaujolais, HRH
JH has spoken sufficiently on this
David Schildknecht writing for WA is also positive in his
reviews of the
wines. An exceptional warm growing season suited the Gamay grape, except
bouts of hail resulted in crop loss for several sub-regions. Many examples
of high quality wines from old vines at lower prices.
Georges Duboeuf Beaujolais Villages Nouveau
A minute past midnight on 19th Nov marked the open retailing of Beaujolais
Nouveau for 2010. Whatever enjoyment you might seek from it, it's nothing
more than a marketing gimmick. Geroges Duboeuf is the most prominently
marketed Beaujolais Nouveau labels outside of France, especially in the US.
The Beaujolais "Villages" Nouveau is better in quality than the straight BN.
$30 from King & Godfrey (Lygon St). Typical notes of banana esters and
kirsch in this light-bodied wine. Full flavour extraction by carbonic
maceration which also minimised the tannin load. The 12% alc is therefore
more obvious. Serve slightly chilled, oddly this went down quite well with
Cheezels. Oddly comforting pairing for my Friday night. 85/100.
Paul Durdilly Beaujolais Les Grandes Coasses
$20 ($15/dz) at Prince Wine Store. A somewhat classic Beaujolais with
elements of dark cherry and sour red berry fruit. Fresh, clear with rough
edges. Drink now. 86/100.
Potel-Aviron Beaujolais-Villages 2009
$20 ($15/dz) at Prince Wine Store. A classic Beaujolais that is a good
example of the slight degree of complexity that can be found at this level.
Clean flavours of fresh dark berry fruit with an element of sour black
cherry. Light-bodied wine but certainly packs more than the previous
Durdilly. Picturing some smoked quail or duck-anise paté with this. Drink
now - 2013. 87/100.
Jean-Claude Lapalu Beaujolais Villages Cuvee
Villes Vignes 2009
$40 from Prince Wine Store. From 50-100 year old vines, vinified in tank by
modified carbonic maceration. A smack of dense purple fruit aromas,
primarily blueberries, boysenberry and lavender. This is a light-bodied wine
of good structure and palate load. Perfect with some sizzling kransky right
now! Drink now - 2015. 89/100.
Michel Chignard Fleurie Les Moriers 2009
$40 from Prince Wine Store. Medium crimson-ruby colour. Youthful nose of
cherry, waft of blackcurrant syrup and a hint of smashed black plums (flesh
and skin). Light-bodied wine but with grip. Great for bbq'd lamb cutlets
garnished with black volcanic salt and white pepper. Drink now - 2015.
30th Nov 2010: Domaine du Vissoux (Pierre-Marie Chermette)
Domaine du Vissoux Beaujolais La Griottes 2009
$27 from Prince Wine Store. Med+ ruby colour with crimson rim.
Fresh nose of strawberry and red cherry, with distinct red fruit on the
palate ending with a sensation of cherry seed. A well-made wine with good
structure and balance for the entry level. Drink now, but don't forget to
chill to 15°C! 88/100.
Domaine du Vissoux Fleurie Poncié 2009
$25/375ml at Prince Wine Store. Medium+ - intense dark ruby core
with purple rim. Clean, youthful nose of rhubarb crumble, cream custard
filling along with a hint of blackcurrant jelly. Dry, med+-bodied wine with
med+ acidity and even tannins that just envelope your mouth. 13% alc. There
is a saline, savoury sensation to this, with watered down blackcurrant juice
and black cherry flavours. A well-structured wine with potential to be
cellar in the short term. Drink now (2012) - 2015. 90/100.
Domaine du Vissoux Brouilly Pierreux 2009
$40/750ml and $25/375ml at Prince Wine Store. Intense dark ruby
core with crimson rim that's a shade darker than the Fleurie. Lovely
youthful aromas of kirsch, crushed dark cherry flesh, Korean plum spirit and
rose-scented talc. Dry, full-bodied wine with high acidity and a grip of
fine, sappy tannins. 13% alc. A good load of concentrated dark berry
flavours with tinge of savouriness, like a slate of roasted meaty residue on
the oven tray that is glazed off with sherry. Drink now - 2015. 92/100.
Domaine du Vissoux Moulin à Vent Les Trois Roches 2009
$45/750ml and $27/375ml at Prince Wine Store. The 3 "Roches" is
reference to Rochegres, La Rochelle and Roche Noire - sites south of Chenas
where fruit for this beauty is sourced from. Intense dark ruby core with
purple crimson rim. Youthful perfume of dark cherry stone, plum skin and
hint of minerality. I'm getting a whiff of alcohol, sharper than the 13% alc
on the label. This might have something to do with the wine being a smidgen
over 15°C. Dry, medium+ bodied wine with med+ acidity and dry tannins. Quite
held-back in comparison to the Brouilly and Fleurie, an even sway of cherry
stalks, plum tannins and crushed blackcurrant. A very interesting wine worth
following over the next few years. Drink 2013 - 2017. 91+/100.