Very decent and value drinking from this quality Yarra Valley outfit.
This is made in the mould of the modern elegant classic Chardonnay and is user friendly for all Chardonnay drinkers making it a very versatile white wine for all types of cuisines and occassions.
Pale youthful greeny to straw, a very youthful drop.
Fresh and mid bodied, it is a bit tight on the aroma front at first and then it opens up with quite a complex set of aromas.
A beautiful wine to savour and drink. The aromas are citrus with lots of green apples, hints of pear, peaches, fig and spice.
The palate delivers a light creaminess coupled with classic peach and tropical fruits. The oak is there integrated and seamless. The acidity tempered yet fresh and there. Balanced and in sync, everything is working with each other well and will continue to develop very nicely over next 5 years.
Just lovely drinking say my notes. I like it a lot!
Try this with pan fried barramundi and olive potato mash.
About $25. Alc 13.0%. Drink to 2024. 94/100 - Excellent.
4 October 2019
Huntington Estate Tim Stevens Signature Shiraz Cabernet 2017
This youthful deep purple Mudgee red comes off a great vintage in that region and is named after winemaker Tim Stevens.
A well blended fresh medium to deep bodied red full of sweet ripe fruit imparted in a medium dry finish.
A special occassion wine that delivers balance in early drinkability but also complexity.
The fruit is there as I said shining through with its star blackcurrants, blackberries and chocolate features, but it has also got plenty of oak backing it up and soft fine tannins auguring well for the future.
Potential plus written all over my tasting note which has a big watch this space tag.
Try it with braised lamb.
Drink to 2032 plus. Alc 14.1%. $100. 92/100 - Excellent.
29 September 2019
Soumah Chardonnay 2018
Really enjoyed this top shelf Chardonnay from the Yarra Valley's Soumah stable of wines.
A bright lemony yellow showing off its youthfulness and potential.
A light to medium bodied Chardonnay that has elegance, grace and substance.
Aromas of peach, melon, citrus lemons and broiche shine through. The nose is where it happening bigtime.
I like the overall structure of this wine, the way the aromas show off the fruit along with its fresh and crisp acidity along with there oak, enough to make its mark and put everything into its rightful place.
The winemaker (and grapegrower!) should be suitably impressed with themselves.
Not a big Chardonnay but not a light pretty one either. An each way bet is the way I would call it.
It drinks really well, with a long peach melon creamy nutty finish. A beautiful classic Chardonnay.
It has 3-5 years in it at least. It will develop over time into a very decent Chardonnay of substance.
Try it with veal saltimbocca.
13.0%. About $80. Drink to 2024. 93/100 - Excellent.
28 August 2019
Huntington Estate Bin 18 Shiraz 2015
Mudgee magic this red wine, it is quality and value at all levels. Loved drinking this.
Still a deep youthful purple. Ink-stainingly so. Alcohol there and in check.
Early notes say deep, intense, full, sweet, ripe, brooding and seductive. Still developing, a complex beautiful red wine.
Medium dry in style, fresh acidity, no sickly fruit, ripe and fullsome, but not OTT. Balanced is the word.
Smooth integrated oak, fine tannins, silky ones. A long, very long fruit driven extended finish.
The fruit words are currants, blackberries, jam, raspberry and it is all about the fruit may I say. A hint of game, tobacco, mint and earth add to the complexity.
Try this with Beef Wellington.
About $32 (a bargain!). Alc 14%. Drink to 2030. 95/100 - Superb.
21 August 2019
De Iuliis Winemakers Selection Chardonnay 2018
This is really good Chardonnay and value plus at that. A pale greenish yellow exhibiting pristine fruit. Pale to light in body, this is a classy elegant white. Medium dry in style with loads of fresh acidity supporting the fruit as well as the tempered and not overdone oak.
Think melons, apples, peaches, lemon curd, lime and spice with peaches and cream dominating on the finish - bigtime deliciousness and just effortless drinking.
Try it with salt and pepper bean curd.
Drink to 2022. Alc 13.2%. About $25. 93/100 - Excellent.
20 August 2019
Soumah Select Vineyard Pinot Noir d'Soumah 2018
Ruby red, deep and intense aromas, youthfulness showing in the glass!
Ripe fruit abounds, fresh acidity supporting the fruit. Layers of complexity here, take it slow.
Strawberries, raspberries, plums and cherries, fruit focussed but throw in some cool mint. Lots of cherries did I say. Good seamless integrated oak, silky fine tannins, smooth long delicious and lineal fruit on the palate, delicious and moreish. Very easy drinking need I say, balanced pure fruit going on and on.
Try it with roast pork belly and oven baked vegetables.
13.0%. About $28. Drink to 2024 plus. 93/100 - Excellent.
19 August 2019
Tarrawarra Estate Chardonnay 2016
Plenty of character and full of flavour, this Yarra Valley Chardonnay really delivers from its first pour.
Pale greenish youthful yellow in colour, light to medium bodied, this is a highly drinkable white wine.
Tight and elegant in structure, the nose delivers glorious citrus, sweet honey dew melons, an array of tropical fruits, good spice, subtle vanilla and grilled nuts.
The fruit is fine and classy as I said and has supporting oak there but that doesn't distract from the wine overall.
Smooth medium dry in finish, the palate has a lovely inherent creaminess that marries well with a freshness and upliftness.
It represents value drinking for the price, drinks perfectly now and is versatile across a range of cuisines.
Try this with Calamari Salad.
Alc 13.2%. About $25. Drink to 2022.
12 August 2019
Gartelmann "Joey" Merlot 2015
This fantastic Merlot from the boutique Gartelmann Hunter Valley winemaker is sourced from cool climate high altitude vineyards in Mudgee and named after owner Jan Gartelmann's grandson Joey.
Joey should be proud of his grandmother over this Merlot as it ticks all the wine boxes for me bigtime.
Deep purple, it is just bursting with fruit as you swirl the glass. Pure plums, black cherries and blackberries come leaping out. Juicy sweet ripe deep but not overdone in any way - balanced and poised are the words.
The time through aging so far has served it really and has allowed the oak and fruit to work their magic together. The alcohol is high but not noticeable in any negative way.
The velvety fruit finish just rewards at every level here through really good integration, smooth seamless classic Merlot flavours, smooth tannins and a sweet ripe extended finish that has just right acidity to make it a beautiful drinking experience.
Has a few good years to develop in it but seriously I think you will struggle to put some bottles away for cellaring once you try the first bottle now!
Drink with Korean fried chicken.
About $30. Alc 15.3%. Drink to 2022. 97/100 - Exceptional.
7 August 2019
Soumah SV Savarro 2018
Soumah are a top quality Yarra Valley outfit.
A brilliant bright clear straw lemon colour shines from the glass.
The purity of the fruit really comes through early on with this excellent white wine.
Youthful, fresh and crisp, this is a light to mid bodied white with a medium dryness to it.
It is packed full of layers of fruit character, noting citrus dominance of green apples and oranges, tropical fruits, broiche and light mock cream. The palate rewards with apples, lemons, oranges and peaches with a lineal crispness which balances the acidity and fruit flavours beautifully.
I kept writing lovely wine all over my tasting notes so the drinkability factor is high.
Try this with chicken and asparagus risotto.
Drink to 2021. 12%. About $30.
93/100 - Excellent.
2 August 2019
Petaluma White Label Chardonnay 2018
Straw yellow, pristine purity in colour.
Lighter bodied in style, a decent Adelaide Hills Chardonnay that delivers respectably for its price range.
Good citrus fruits, ripe lemons and crisp green apples in particular along with tropical fruit such as melon then some light honey, broiche and a creaminess as well.
Well structured with fresh mild acidity, integrated oak providing overall a crisp medium long finish.
Try this with pork and pineapple Thai curry.
Alc 13.5%. About $25-$28. Drink to 2023.
91/100 - Excellent.
30 July 2019
Hastwell & Lightfoot Shiraz 2017
This quality McLaren Vale boutique winery impressed me recently with its excellent Cabernet Sauvignon and this Shiraz is in the same class as well.
Deep purple youthfully so. Deep bodied, an intense fullsomeness comes through the aromas. Full ripe and developing well with time so far, the nose seduces you with an array of glorious primary fruit to come. The oak is there integrated, the tannins soft but there again. The primary fruit is the star and the supporting actors are playing there part well as well.
Currants, blackberries, a hit of raspberry jam, red cherries, an earthiness and an inherent spiciness that adds to the overall aroma profile beautifully. The fruit is well balanced yet brooding and enticing. Moreish at that. Medium to long in finish, it is a foodies red wine and perfect with Winter cuisine.
A good solid firm cheese would allow it also to shine as a stand alone Shiraz.
Try it with Italian sausage and gorgonzola pizza.
Alc 14%. About $25 - Value!. Drink to 2027 plus. 94/100 - Excellent.
27 July 2019
Taylors Jaraman Shiraz 2017
Deep crimson purple, youthful in every sense.
Needs more time, in its infancy I wrote, has loads of potential scribbled down the side of the page.
This Clare Valley McLaren Vale sourced Shiraz is so laden with freshness and vibrance through its youthfulness as well as the imparting of its intense full black and red fruits.
The palate is fresh and spice filled, has silky fine assertive tannins, youthful energetic oak and delivers a medium long finish full of blackberries, raspberries, cherries and rhubarb along with an earthiness, hints of dark chocolate and a touch of star anise.
A complex wine that will with time develop beautifully.
Ok to drink now but remember to buy extra as it is just going to get better and better. I understand why some people may find this red a bit raw at first taste but do give it time in the glass and it will show off its true potential. Indeed for me it drank even better the next day which is always a good sign of what's more to come.
Oh and it demands Winter cuisine food to accompany it and show off its best alongside.
Try this with slow roasted pork stuffed with apple and raisins.
Drink 2021 to 2027 plus plus. Alc 14.5%. About $32.
92/100 - Excellent.
23 July 2019
Huntington Estate Basket Dried Mudgee Shiraz 2016
A very decent special occasion Shiraz and very well crafted at that by Tim Stevens, Huntington's winemaker.
A cherry to garnet red colour, the wine is starting to settle in for the long haul and exhibiting potential plus (and not bad at all drinking right now as well may I say).
Deep brooding intense and spice filled it is a big red wine from beginning to end. Spicy red and black and blue fruits dominate the aromas and later on the palate as well. Think currants, berries, cherries, a bit of rhubarb and then also some dark chocolate and mocha coffee and also a more savoury dimension provided by some dried herbs and black pepper.
Integrated oak (there present but working its way in with the fruit), the result is a big but also quite balanced for its age red, complex yes with multiple layers along with a long finish.
It drinks quite well now as I said and it developed well with some breathing in the glass and then also overnight but the oak and tannin structure is such that the best is yet to come IMO!
Try this with Beef Wellington.
About $75. Drink to 2026 plus. Alc 15.5%. 94/100 - Excellent.