Friday, August 25, 2023

St Hugo 2020 Cabernet Sauvignon

In a wine world awash with new labels, new styles, new grape varieties, even wines from new countries, it is sometimes nice to return to the familiar and reliable; like this excellent Coonawarra cabernet sauvignon from a famous label. Winemaker Peter Munro has captured the essence of Coonawarra's terra rossa strip with an impressively structured cabernet that will doubtless cellar well if you have patience, but is already drinking impressively. Dark fruit flavours pair seamlessly with subtle French oak treatment to produce a wine that tastes expensive, but actually offers good value. Pair this very stylish red with roast lamb and all the trimmings. $55.

Friday, August 18, 2023

Tapanappa 2022 Tiers Chardonnay


One of Australia's finest chardonnays from one of its very best winemakers. Ladies and gentlemen we have a winner. In the Piccadilly Valley of the Adelaide Hills, Brian Croser AO planted the Tiers vineyard in 1979 - making it the first in the region. With terroir similar to Montrachet and Meursault, it makes complete sense that this one of the best places in Australia to grow quality chardonnay. Fermented in French oak barriques (one third of them new) this has also been matured on full lees. But it is the brilliant fruit that stars with classic stone fruit flavours allied to some brioche, maize meal, nutty and stony mineral notes. There are wave upon wave of flavours and textures on the palate. A wine of precision with length and lovely acid. You could cellar it for a decade or so, of course, but it is pretty hard to resist right now. Pair with suckling pig for a complete gourmet blow out. Superb drinking and 97 points from me. $110.

Friday, August 11, 2023

Longview 2022 Vista Shiraz Barbera


The wines from the Saturno family's Longview range are invariably great value; offering interesting drinking at very fair prices. I was particularly taken by this unusual co-fermented blend of Aussie favourite shiraz (73%) with the Italian grape variety barbera (27%), which combine to produce a red that is fresh and approachable but also has some attractive savoury elements. This one is all about the hand-picked fruit, which has been matured briefly in older French oak hogsheads, adding some textural elements. The juicy and lively berry fruit makes this the perfect partner for a midweek spaghetti bolognaise, or Friday night pizza. And the Longview cellar door/eatery on the fringes of the Adelaide Hills at Macclesfield is well worth an excursion. $25.

Friday, August 4, 2023

Feudo Arancio 2022 Rosato

It is hard to past the Feudo Arancio range if you are looking for an authentic taste of Italy at a bargain basement price. I reviewed the Nero d'Avola in Ciao Magazine a couple of weeks ago and this rosato - made from the same native Sicilian grape variety - is equally impressive. It is a lovely crisp, fresh and dry rosé style with red berry fruit flavours to the fore, surprising savoury/minmeral elegance and some brisk acid. We paired with some pan-seared tuna, but it would go equally well a charcuterie plate, or a spring picnic. With a restrained alcohol content of just 12%, this is excellent value at $20. Imported by Single Vineyard Sellers.