Monday, June 28, 2010

Krinklewood 2009 Chardonnay

Krinklewood is one of the quiet achievers of the Hunter Valley, Rod Windrim's biodynamic vineyard tending to fly under the radar because of its remote location on Wollombi Road. That's a darn shame because the wines from Krinklewood are invariably delightful - and keenly priced. This is a lovely modern chardonnay, light in alcohol at 12.7% and elegant in style. It's grapefruit-tinged citrus characters that dominate on the palate with oak and almond hints very much in the background. If this came from an acclaimed cool-climate region it would be creating a considerable stir with its quality. $24.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Vinteloper 2008 Shiraz

Vinteloper is a new name on the wine scene; making young winemaker David Bowley either very brave or extremely foolhardy in a hugely competitive industry. Fortunately, the wines are good enough to ensure a solid future for the former cork salesman (who sensibly uses screwcaps for his own wines). This McLaren Vale shiraz is big and concentrated but also has considerable elegance - a difficult trick to pull off in what was a nightmarishly hot vintage. Dark cassis flavours star on the palate, along with hints of spicy oak. Smooth, with plenty of length, this is a wine with excellent structure, good tannins and immediate drinkability. $40.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Dowie Doole 2010 Chenin Blanc

Chenin Blanc is often called chenin bland because of the many undistinguished wines it produces, but there's an exception to every rule and this is an absolute cracker from McLaren Vale; dry with crisp green apple flavours, it is light, zingy and lively - and a very good alternative to sauvignon blanc. The wine is almost water-coloured but don't be deceived. It is aromatic on the nose with some nice flinty minerality on the finish. This would be great with oysters, or a seafood platter, and is great value for $18.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Cape Mentelle 2006 Cabernet Sauvignon

Cape Mentelle is one of the benchmark Margaret River cabernets, consistently excellent, and this is an impressive wine from a challenging vintage, a testament to the attention to detail shown. It's medium bodied with intense dark cherry, blackcurrant and tapenade characters, forward tannins, well-balanced oak treatment and hints of coffee and chocolate. Opulent and stylish but with great drinkability, this is highly recommended. Terrific with game meats like venison. $84.