Friday, December 29, 2023

Oliver's Taranga 2023 Fiano


Corrina Wright, the sixth-generation winemaker from Oliver's Taranga in McLaren Vale is Australia's undisputed queen of fiano, a dry white grape variety that originates in Campania in southern Italy, and on the island of Sicily. If you enjoy white wines with textural elements and real personality then this is well worth a look. Fiano is well suited to warmer regions of Australia as it is heat and drought resistant. This is made with minimal intervention, undergoes indigenous ferment and a small portion sees oak, while the majority is made in stainless steel. Thinks freshness, a beguiling blend of citrus, white stone fruit, nuttiness and herbal notes. Pair with with anything from a spicy sausage pizza to Thai or Korean dishes. Lovely stuff and excellent value. $28.

Friday, December 22, 2023

Xanadu 2021 Cabernet Sauvignon


Looking some affordable luxury over the holiday period? Xanadu winemaker Glenn Goodall is producing excellent wines across several ranges, but this classically stylish Margaret River cabernet is right in the zone where quality meets value. Perfect for pairing with anything from sausage rolls to a beef wellington. It's a blend of cabernet sauvignon (90%), malbec (6%), petit verdot (4%) in a Bordeaux meets Australia style; elegance meets power. This is made largely from grower fruit sourced from the sub regions of Wilyabrup (40%) and Wallcliffe (44%) - with a goodly portion of this from estate fruit. It spent 14 months in French oak, adding palate structure and tension alongside the classic dark currant cabernet flavours. Plenty of length here and lots of pleasure to be had. Drink now or cellar for up to seven years. $45.

Friday, December 15, 2023

Serafino 2022 Reserve Grenache


This wine has won so many awards that it needs its own trophy room. Medium-bodied, bright and energetic, it is, however, just one of the stars from a formidable range from this family-owned winery in McLaren Vale. Understandably, it has attracted a lot of attention. It's made in an unashamedly fruit-forward style, showcasing the juicy fruit characters of high-quality grenache. Plush but complex. You could pair this with a wide range of Mediterranean flavours, from pizzas and pastas, to charcuterie plates and cheese boards. It may be hard to track down given its many show successes, but it will certainly be worth the effort. $40.

Friday, December 8, 2023

Clonakilla 2023 Canberra District Riesling


Family-owned Clonakilla is best known for its shiraz-based red wines, with the shiraz-viognier blend an Australian benchmark. There are also several other outstanding wines in the range, however, like this exceptional dry riesling. a variety that shines in Murrumbateman’s cool, continental climate and decomposed granite soils. This would be an excellent wine to have around over the Christmas period given it would pair well with everything from a seafood platter to cold turkey salad. There are some lovely florals here and some delicious lemon and lime citrus notes on the palate, which finishes crisp and clean. Great stuff. $35. 

Friday, December 1, 2023

HATCH 2022 Barossa St Johns Shiraz

Chris Hatcher, affectionately known as Hatch across the wine industry, spent several decades as a corporate winemaker, mainly as chief winemaker for Wolf Blass, where he worked for 35 years. Now retired, he has started making small batches of "fun and enjoyable" wines under his own label, which features distinctive Art Deco-style, jazz-era art on the neck capsules. St Johns is one of the highest regions in the Barossa Valley and produces wines of intensity and concentration, along with, on this occasion, some subtle soft shoe shuffle. So think dark, plush and flavoursome, but also food friendly. Pair with red meat, or mushroom, dishes. $52.