Monday, February 28, 2022

Amon-Ra 2019 by Ben Glaetzer


Serious Barossa shiraz from one of the masters of the art - with a price tag to match and bottled under cork for emphasis. It is big, and it is bold and it speaks its mind, but it carries its 15.5% alcohol with a shimmy and a swagger. Full flavoured and intense but still stylish, although it does demand to be enjoyed with roast beef, Yorkshire pudding and horse radish. In Egyptian mythology, Amon-Ra is considered to be the king of all gods and this is a Glaetzer flagship - a worthy present for a wine-loving friend, or to yourself to cellar, perhaps. 100% shiraz, from the Ebenezer sub-district at the northern tip of the Barossa Valley, where the vines vary from 50-130 years old. Matured for 16 months in 100% new oak hogshead barrels (95% French and 5% American); plummy and earthy. $100.

Tuesday, February 22, 2022

Pooley 2020 Cooinda Vale Chardonnay


Just about every new release from Tasmanian producer Pooley is worthy of a review. The wines are invariably stylish and considered; cool-climate wine royalty. This is a thoroughly modern single-vineyard chardonnay from an estate vineyard in the Coal River Valley, just outside Hobart, that has supplied fruit for Penfolds Yattarna. This was whole-bunch pressed and matured in 40% new French oak, although the quality fruit has soaked up the oak, which merely sits in the background. Still a little tight but with some exciting energy, lovely balance and some flinty minerality on the palate, this deserves to be paired with a free-range roast pork leg with all the trimmings. Superb. $65.

Saturday, February 12, 2022

Lyons Will 2019 Pinot Noir


OK. Consider me seriously impressed. Both by the class of this wine and the value it offers. Pinotphiles in Australia tend to head to Tasmania, the Yarra Valley or Mornington Peninsula for quality, but this Macedon Ranges offering is simply top class. Think wild ferment, a small percentage of whole bunch, time on skins and quality French oak. Delicate but grippy, just 12.8% alcohol and beautifully balanced. Unfined, unfiltered, vegan friendly and sublimely stylish. 95/100 from me but only 380 dozen cases were made, so time may be of the essence. $42.

Monday, February 7, 2022

d'Arenberg 2021 The Hermit Crab


We are in serious bargain territory here with a white wine that is a textural and interesting as it is crisp and refreshing. This is a blend of two classic grape varieties from the Rhone Valley in France that thrive in McLaren Vale: viognier and marsanne. Delightfully fresh and floral on those nose, this offers a panoply of tropical fruit favours from pineapple to guava along with a hint of spicy confit ginger and some nicely bitey citrus. Quite dry; quite delicious. Pair with Korean pork, or chilli chicken. $19.