Saturday, August 26, 2017

Nepenthe 2017 Altitude Sauvignon Blanc

All right you up the back. Stop sniggering about "cougar juice". Brisk, vibrant sauvignon blanc remains a hugely popular wine style with Australian consumers. From a very good vintage in the Adelaide Hills, this new release will find favour with a lot of lovers of fresh, high-acid, fruit-driven whites - and is as good, if not better, than many of its Kiwi counterparts. That's no surprise as Nepenthe has been producing sauvignon blanc since its inaugural vintage in 1997 and has become one of the Australian benchmarks. This has immense length and depth of flavour and is low in alcohol at 12%. Think cut freshly cut grass, Granny Smith apples, herbal notes and a crisp, zesty palate. A great thirst quencher for summer and a terrific partner for oysters, scallops, sushi or salt and pepper squid. $20ish.

Friday, August 11, 2017

John Duval 2014 Plexus

John Duval, the former chief winemaker for Penfolds, goes about his business with a minimum of fuss. That means the John Duval Wines range sometimes flies a little under the radar despite offering some of the best value from the Barossa. This, which can often be found at retail for $35, is a definite case in point; a beguiling blend of three varieties that traditionally shine in warmer climes; shiraz, grenache and mourvedre. Fourth-generation winemaker Duval has taken some quality fruit from old-vine, lower-yielding vineyards and crafted a wine that whispers its magic rather than shouts. The quality French oak plays a key support role in a delightful red of impeccable balance. $40.

Sunday, August 6, 2017

Turkey Flat 2017 Rosé

Reliably good year after year, this is, quite simply, one of the best dry savoury rosés to be found in Australia. Made from 100% grenache fruit grown in the Barossa Valley, this has for several years been one of the style leaders as rosé transitioned from curiosity to mainstream. The back label tells the story: "Simply a light, crisp and beautifully aromatic wine that is best served chilled." Match it will anything from seared tuna to a Lebanese mezze platter. $21.