Saturday, February 20, 2016

Mitolo 2013 G.A.M. McLaren Vale Shiraz

The 2013 red wines from Frank Mitolo and his McLaren Vale team are right in the zone; offering splendid drinking on release and reflecting the excellent vintage. This is a wine of impressive balance with everything in place as the 40+-year-old vines get to show their quality. There is 70% new oak in the mix but it doesn't intrude on the dark fruit and lifted herb notes. The amalgam of sweet fruit and savoury notes creates a wine that is truly memorable - a worthy tribute to Mitolo's three children; Gemma, Alexander and Marco, after whom the wine is named. Unfined and unfiltered, this offers superb drinking. $58.   

Friday, February 12, 2016

De Bortoli 2015 Villages Sauvignon Blanc

Sauvignon blanc is a not a variety that is usually associated with the Yarra Valley, but this is a gem of an easy-drinking wine from Steve Webber and the team at De Bortoli; a lovely choice for the final days of summer. It has just a tad more palate interest than most savvys at the same price point, having been fermented in both stainless steel and oak casks, as well as having enjoyed some time on lees. This is a fine and elegant example of cool-climate Aussie savvy; think of a ballerina skipping across a lily pond. It is vibrant, refreshing and food friendly with citrus more to the fore than herbs or tropical fruit characters. $20.

Saturday, February 6, 2016

Stanton & Killeen 2013 The Prince Reserva

This is a wine that marks out a new pathway for Rutherglen wine pioneers Stanton & Killeen, best known for their excellent fortified wines. It is a unique blend of four Portuguese grape varieties; tinta barocca, touriga nacional, tinta cao and tinta roriz; in almost equal quantities and was previously released in 2008 and 2009 in tribute to the late Chris Killeen, known as “The Prince of Port”. Although the grape varieties have previously been used as fortified material, here they are picked earlier to produce an elegant and savoury red with a distinct Iberian accent. It is delicious in its youth; rambunctious and fun and a great match for dishes like rabbit or venison. $45.