www.paulippolito.com.au- WINE REVIEWS-paulippolito.com.au
13 July 2020
Cape Mentelle "Brooks" Chardonnay 2017
Oh the Margaret River does Chardonnay ever so well and this is a fine example from the Cape Mentelle folk.
Pale greeny lemony yellow there is a youthfulness exuding from the glass.
Classic peach melon on the nose with hints of tropical pineapple, rich cashews and good supporting oak.
A substantial Chardonnay, (hint there is good oak as I said and 14% alcohol here) but it also has good lineal acidity and an excellent overall structure to boot. Fresh and crisp in palate delivery whilst also holding the fruit together nicely.
Seamless smooth rich and long in finish, you get that lovely mouthful of balanced well roundedness.
A lovely food wine - I would try it with coconut chicken curry.
Drink to 2022. Alc 14%. About $25. 93/100 - Excellent.
3 July 2020
Disaronno Originale Amaretto
It is the world's favourite Italian liqueur and has been made since 1525.
It is also my favourite Italian liqueur (and quite possible my world one as well). So already this Amaretto has a few very good things going for it.
This is not just an almond liqueur. It is much much more than that. The brooding glorious intoxicating seductive aromas off the glass (on the rocks, of course) just flood the senses. Fruit and nut filled aromas, almonds, oranges and apricots come through. It is deep and rich and full on but balanced. You get fruit, you get spicy fruit, nuttiness and spice but all in sync, the alcohol from the spirit side plays its part nicely as well. Everything is in place - the distilling was done just right. The cut of its structure makes sure the balance is right. You get the fruit sweetness with a good hit of dry spirit on the other side as I said and the rest is history as they say.
A perfect Winter aperitif and yes "mi piace tanto!"
About $50 - 700ml. Alc 20%. Drink It Now (and regularly!). 98/100 - Exceptional.
30 June 2020
Angullong Fossil Hill Tempranillo 2018
From the Orange region in NSW, this cool climate medium bodied Mediterranean style of red works well with a range of diverse cuisines and really sits well as a varietal here that is in tune with the Australian climate.
Fruit filled and focused, the deep purple ruby red colour in the glass shows off the bright fruit nicely. You get deep ripe fresh fruit off the nose. A medium dry red it also has an inherent savouriness that Sangiovese provides. You get raspberries, cherries, rhubarb, spice, red earth, some light cigarbox and black olives.
The acidity is low and tempered, the tannins soft silky and fine, the alcohol there but ok and the palate provides a medium finish of balanced harmonious soft easy drinking spicy red and black fruit again with a savoury edge.
Try it with tortellini bolognese.
About $28. Drink to 2023. Alc 14.5%. 88/100 - Very Good.
22 June 2020
Lark Hill Vineyard Chardonnay 2017
Top shelf Canberra District Chardonnay. Pristine elegant and purity of fruit from beginning to end.
Loved this cool climate high altitude Chardonnay. My style of Chardonnay, sharp, focussed fruit delivered with precision, judicious winemaking and making its mark in a deliberate measured way.
Pale whitish yellow representing early days. Youthful and developing on the nose, you have crisp upfront white nectarine, honeydew melon and citrus lemons off a beautiful aroma set. Tight at first then unwinding gloriously in the glass. Good just right crisp acidity supporting the fruit as is the oak, married well, providing that mock creaminess side by side to the fruit.
Long and extended in finish, it is delicious drinking with classic peach melon and lemon and limes that go on and one.
Top class wine drinking with plenty in reserve for further development (but seriously it is drinking superbly just now!).
Try it with oven baked barramundi and some canneloni bean mash.
Alc 12.5%. Drink to 2023. About $45. 95/100 - Exceptional.
13 June 2020
Hollick Bond Road Chardonnay 2015
This Chardonnay from the Cooonawarra region has a bit of everything going for it. Classic varietal, regional influences, a good bit of maturity, value and above all it tastes really good!
The Hollick's are boutique winemakers who know their stuff and have been making good wine for a long long time. The grapes and winemaking hit the mark and it is one of those wineries that delivers the goods consistently so expectations are always met.
Gloriously lemon in the glass, it exudes Chardonnay from the first moment. Think classic peach melon, tropical fruits, white marble, butterscotch and cashews.
Long luxuriant, tangy with good solid long robust peach melon creamy flavours, it is moreish. It have such a good mouthfeel of fruit, well imparted barrel fermented French oak and accompanying soft melded acidity, that it is drinking perfectly right now. Food friendly or standalone, a top Chardonnay and respectably priced to boot.
Try it with stir fried seafood with crispy egg noodles.
Drink to 2022. Alc 13.5%. About $25. 93/100- Excellent.
12 June 2020
Patritti April Red Grenache Pedro Ximenez 2020
A couple of things caught my eye regarding this red blend, the early release 2020 wine vintage, the sourcing of old vine fruit stretching back to 1907, the origins of it from the Adelaide city region and the clever blending of red varietal Grenache and the white Pedro Ximenez.
Family owned and around since 1925, you can see the hand crafting influence in the grapes and winemaking here.
The glass resonates nicely with fresh ripe red and black fruit aromas, well balanced and showing off synchronicity of the grapes to winemaking in terms of fruit, alcohol, structure and drinkability.
It is a youthful energetic red on one hand but you can really feel the depth of the quality of the fruit on the other. Very clever as I said to blend the juicy fruit and spice filled Grenache with the Pedro.
Raspberries, blueberries and cherries, some light spice, thinking cinnamon really come through when tasted, as does the more substantial Pedro characters that are beautifully summarised as Christmas cake.
Well rounded and well delivered with a medium to long finish, here is a versatile easy to drink fresh uplifting yet real red wine that works a treat with a range of cuisines.
Try it with freshly made fettucine pasta, slow cooked plum tomato sauce and some prawns.
Alc 14%. Drink to 2026. About $24. 93/100 – Excellent.
7 June 2020
Henkell Trocken Dry-Sec Sparkling Wine
This German sparkling wine delivers bang for buck and quality at that.
Pale straw, it is brilliant very light yellow in the glass with tight fine beads forming.
The aromas are classic citrus, lemon curd, limes and fresh green apples. Soft acidity accompanying making it use friendly. On the dry side on the palate yet the fruit still comes through very well indeed. I like the way it does this showing off the fruit but not being too overpowering. It creates popular appeal through its impartment of flavours yet with restraint.
Great standalone sparkling wine but will work fine with the right lighter style cuisine.
Try it with Vietnamese fresh spring rolls.
Alc. 11.5%. About $15. Drink Now. 90/100 – Very Good.
6 June 2020
Angullong Fossil Hill Sangiovese 2018
Cool climate Orange NSW regional wine making and Mediterranean grape varieties sit very well together.
This glorious garnet red Sangiovese is a fine example.
The aromas resonate varietal cherries, black olive, mixed dried herbs, forest floor, more cherries and stewed rhubarb. Enticing and auguring well for things to come.
The acidity is low and integrated and adds to the wine's overall structure. The oak treatment has augured the fruit and resulted in a seamless mouthfeel, fine tannins and loads of flavours both fruit driven and savoruy.
The word "balance" is reflected many times on my tasting note and the word "yum" crept in quite a few times as well.
One of the better Australian Sangiovese's I have had.
Try it with tortellini bolognese.
Drink to 2024. Alc 14.5%. About $28. 94/100 - Excellent.
5 June 2020
Squealing Pig Pinot Noir Rose` 2019
I don't mind Marlborough Pinot Noir from across the Tasman there, so unsurprisingly this Rose` delivers very nicely for me.
Plush light pink the colour dazzles in the glass.
Classic cherries, raspberries, strawberries and musksticks on the nose. Juicy fresh uplifted fruit as it should be for a Rose`. Good supporting acidity, long on the finish, medium dry - the fruit flavours of strawberries, peach and melon balancing out very well. Delicious seamless effortless drinking.
Drink Now. About $15. 13.0%. 91/100 - Excellent.
1 June 2020
Howard Park Miamup Chardonnay 2019
Really like this Margaret River Chardonnay at all levels - quality, value and price as well as the way it delivers as standalone drinking and its ability to pair very nicely with an array of cuisines. Not much more you ask for in a wine.
Gloriously shiny youthful greeny yellow in the glass.
Peach melon and lemon and grapefruit, some vanilla bean and some cashew creaminess come through the aroma set. Sharp and quite sophisticated on the nose. Promises a lot just off the nose. The acidity is fresh and lively and cuts through the French oak treatment of the fruit very well. Put together it is an uplifted Chardonnay with class and substance. I like it a lot.
Try with a prawn risotto.
Alc 13%. About $28. Drink to 2024. 94/100 - Excellent.
30 May 2020
Asahi Super Dry Beer
A favourite go to beer of mine.
No surprises as to why it understandably Japan's favourite No 1 beer.
It is dry and lightly bitter on the back palate as you may have gathered but it also has a marvellous full flavoured taste gained through excellent malted barley hops and some truly great fermentation.
Clean crisp and refreshing on the palate, quality beer from aromas to finish on palate. Well balanced I would say if I was reviewing a wine. A good all rounder.
Try it with pizza.
About $22 per six pack. Alc - 5%. 94/100 - Excellent.
17 May 2020
Yalumba The Y Series Sangiovese Rose` 2019
Was shaking my head whilst looking at shelf upon shelf at my local wine shop the other day at the range and assortment (and price) of Rose` on the Australian market. Ten years ago we were scoffing at Rose` as a style as opposed to scoffing it down like we are nowadays.
Fresh and uplifted on the nose, the plums and cherries and strawberries come through nicely on this blush light salmon pink South Australian example. Dry and lighter in style, the fruit still is the star on the palate with balanced fruit flavours as well as a medium dry finish that is just right stand alone drinking. Having said that it will sit neatly beside a plate of freshly grilled fish.
Drink Now. About $12. 11.5%. 91/100 - Excellent.
10 May 2020
A Trio of Mother’s Day Chardonnay
Scotchmans Hill “Hill” Geelong Chardonnay 2018
Classically Chardonnay, cool climate elegance and classy in structure and presentation. Fresh uplifted varietal fruit – think peach melon and citrus, tight acidity. Beautiful nose, classic is a word I keep repeating. Unoaked and seamlessly fruit on the palate with the lemons and oranges showing off along with a lightly creamy mouthfeel. Yum. Really good value drinking IMO. Try it with some rock oysters.
Drink to 2022. 13.5%. About $15. 94/100 – Excellent.
Tempus Two Chardonnay 2019
A good solid South Australian blend of Chardonnay. The fruit and the acidity and the oak work a treat together to show off what is a fruit focussed, well balanced and tightly structured with simple peach, melon and abundant lemons on the dry to long finish. Try it with a fettucine al funghi.
Drink to 2023. 12.5%. About $15. 90/100-Very Good.
Jacobs Creek Reserve Chardonnay 2019
Value plus. Shaking head whilst I savour the aromas wondering how do they do it for the price? An excellent Chardonnay in every sense of the word – quality price and value and versatility to stand alone and drink by self or marry itself with a range of cuisines. Think peach, melon, apples and grapefruit. Good acidity, just neat oak treatment. A good solid seamless long delicious finish just tops it off. Try it with baked lamb shoulder.
Drink to 2023. 13%. About $15. 92/100 – Excellent.