Monday, 31 December 2018

Goodbye 2018 and hello 2019!

What a year 2018 has been!

I'm so grateful for the opportunities that have come my way and I'm equally as grateful for the wonderful people with whom I've shared some invigorating conversations. There's been a lot of learning, some mistake making, some risk-taking, but an absolute bucket load of fun and enjoyment.


Gundog Estate Marksman's Shiraz 2017



From a fine Canberra vintage comes this superb Shiraz oozing class and charisma.

Oakridge Vineyard Series Henk Pinot Noir 2017



This dude Henk is a cool kinda guy. No fuss, just an easy drink with all the complexities you'd ask for from a smart Pinot.

Tyrrell's Stevens Single Vineyard Semillon 2013


Seductive citrus fruit crying out for an embrace. For those lovers of aged Semillon, here's a little ripper with some bottle aging already done for you.

TarraWarra South Block Chardonnay 2016


Tasty as Chardy from TarraWarra. A great performer at the price point too, I could have a couple of glasses easy.

Cat Amongst the Pigeons Jazz Cat Rosé 2018


A friend came over recently and she's a bandit for a dry Rosé and she's pretty smitten with this. It's easy to see why.

Westcourt Wines Liqueur Muscat 2000


Awarded the Outstanding Fortified Wine of Show at the Mudgee Wine Awards in 2018. A superb eighteen-year-old Muscat.

Saturday, 29 December 2018

Gundog Estate Indomitus Citrea 2018




The first release of the Indomitus Citrea made with Riesling sourced from Canberra's Four Winds vineyard.


d’Arenberg The Dead Arm Shiraz 2016


Dead Arm! A wine with great history and here's a beauty with a bright future.

Meerea Park Black Shiraz 2017

Only produced in exceptional years, this 2017 release follows the 2011 and 2014. A blend of three parcels of fruit sourced from nearby vineyards, only 102 dozen were produced.


Friday, 28 December 2018

Gundog Estate Indomitus Albus 2018


Walk on the textural side. What a wine stretching Semillon to new places!

Airlie Bank Franc 2018

"Bottled whilst fresh and bursting with juvenile charm," says the back label. I'm not sure what more to say really - this is a beauty.

Lou Miranda Centenarian Shiraz Mataro 2015


There's some serious history behind this label. The Shiraz vines were planted in 1907 and the Mataro in 1897. A blend of roughly 80/20, the wine spent 24 months in French oak.


Monday, 24 December 2018

Saturday, 22 December 2018

Golden Grove Estate Vermentino 2018


Ray Costanzo knows how to Vermentino. He's made it his mission and this new release 2018 doesn't miss a beat.

Cooks Lot Iconique Barrique Pinot Noir 2016

Super smart Pinot from Orange. Who wouldda thought? The class of Duncan Cook shines again.

Castle Rock Estate Skywalk Riesling 2018

For 18 bucks this is a wonderful Riesling that moves and sways with consummate ease.


Opawa Pinot Gris 2017

A cheeky Marlborough Pinot Gris oozing simplicity and happiness all at the same time.


Friday, 21 December 2018

Oliver's Taranga Vermentino 2018




I'm tasting this on a day where it is 33 degrees outside before 10am. I reckon if I opened the door I could sink a few large glasses in no time. A wonderfully refreshing wine built for thirst quenching.


Chain Ring Cider Co Granny Gear 2018


Granny Gear cider. Not one for yo mumma, just a cider made from a field blend of Granny Smith and Fuji apples.

Petersons Mudgee Semillon 2012

Petersons have been plying their trade in Mudgee since 1981. This Semillon was awarded the Best Semillon at the Mudgee Wine Show 2018.

Pizzini Brachetto 2018


A quick look through the Qwine records shows this is the second Brachetto to make it to the bench. An Italian variety not all that common in Australia, this is some sweet fizz to keep your "I only drink sweet wine" mother or mother-in-law amused during the holiday season.

Opawa Sauvignon Blanc 2018


An easy drinking Sauv Blanc to help beat the summer heat.

1838 Wines Classic French Style Rosé 2018


The best Rosé at the Mudgee Wine Show 2018. I know little more about it I'm afraid.

Thursday, 20 December 2018

Huntington Estate Reserve Shiraz 2015

The vines contributing to this wine are celebrating 50 years in 2019. Chat to Tim Stevens about Mudgee Shiraz and you better get comfortable. A wealth of knowledge, his passion is captivating.

Leeuwin Estate Prelude Chardonnay 2017

The Leeuwin Estate Art Series is the Chardonnay boss, but if it's price tag is well out of reach, you lose little with a bottle of this under your wing. Simply, it's a gorgeous example of Margaret River Chardonnay.

Schwarz Nitschke Block Shiraz 2017

Plenty here to please those on the lookout for a rich and generous Barossa Shiraz.

Tuesday, 18 December 2018

Parker Coonawarra Estate Shiraz 2017

Foolproof value Shiraz for your drinking pleasure. I've often seen this priced below $20 at chain retailers, and if you see it, grab one or two. Your insides will thank you.

Shaw Vineyard Estate Riesling 2018

You could be forgiven for thinking this Riesling hails from the Clare Valley sub-region of Polish Hill River. Bone dry, it's a scrumptious number ready to tear into fresh or fried seafood.

Schwarz Shiraz 2017

A blend of eight Barossa vineyards, this is a spicy sucker.

Monday, 17 December 2018

Robert Stein Reserve Chardonnay 2017


David Cumming runs a marketing and communications business called Define Wine. He seems to have an endless supply of NSW wineries gunning for his services, and now, an ever-growing range of interstate producers seems to flock under his wing. He must be doing something right...
I recently received a tasting pack from him as a celebration of the gold medal and trophy winners from the 2018 Mudgee Wine Show. This Chardonnay from Robert Stein took the gong for the variety - and it's easy to see why.

Polperro Mornington Peninsula Pinot Gris 2017

A ripping Pinot Gris. Lucious, damn you just want to dig in. Coming from a vineyard 270m where no herbicides or pesticides are used. The fruit was handpicked, whole bunch pressed and fermented in barrel on full lees.

Golden Grove Estate Sauvignon Blanc 2018


An easy drinking Sauvignon Blanc made with some effort in the form of barrel fermentation.

Leeuwin Estate Art Series Chardonnay 2015

Wine review 700 for 2018! Why not make it something special and Australia's best Chardonnay is the perfect candidate. Absolutely sublime, no stone has been left unturned to deliver a wine of poise and supreme elegance.


Sunday, 16 December 2018

Oakridge Meunier 2018


This is the type of wine you want to slosh in your glass and give your insides a reward after a crappy day at work. So moreish and delicious, you won't feel guilty for not sharing.

Pizzini Forza di Ferro Sangiovese 2015

The top Sangiovese in the Pizzini range and it holds that position with aplomb.

Pizzini Pietra Rosa Sangiovese 2016

A taste of this and the old Montell Jordan song from the 90s, "This is how we do it," rings in my ears. The second of three Sangiovese's in the Pizzini range, this stands tall and proudly demonstrates what a great drink this variety can produce.

Meerea Park Alexander Munro Chardonnay 2017

It's time to get back on the horse after a 10-day hiatus indulging in sunshine and sand. Reality beckons and I have a few wines to review...
Here's a fuller style of Chardonnay from the Hunter Valley. Lots of pleasure awaits within.


Thursday, 6 December 2018

Gundog Estate Indomitus Rosa 2018


I made the comment in a recent review of a Gundog Estate wine that Matt Burton doesn't make bad wine. It's almost as though he's produced this just to prove what we already know. This is a cracker! Fist pumping, big smiles, large pours and all that jazz...

Ridgemill Estate The Czar Saperavi 2017


If you are yet to dip your toe into the delicious waters of Saperavi, this would be a smart place to start. A variety gaining some good traction in Australia, this is a beauty.


d'Arenberg The Laughing Magpie Shiraz Viognier 2014


A fab Laughing Magpie release!


Huntington Estate Special Reserve Merlot 2016


Big framed Merlot. Very much an 'old' style, that is, straight up and down with not too much variance. A bit like the old line and length Glenn McGrath used to bowl - reliable stuff.

Wednesday, 5 December 2018

Lou Miranda Shiraz Mataro 2015


Shiraz Mataro is a rare blend but one I'd like to see more of. I even made one back in 2014, affectionately known as Shitaro, but that's another story. Here's a wine you could settle in with very easily.

Hastwell and Lightfoot Sands of Time Shiraz 2016

The Sands of Time label is a nod to the ancient deep sands which have a significant impact on the McLaren Vale region. The flagship Shiraz, the fruit is selected from the best of five vineyard blocks.

Pizzini Nonna Gisella Sangiovese 2017


If you have a mixed crowd around a table and seek a wine sure to please, head in this direction. It's such an easy drinking Sangiovese to suit a range of foods too.

Alkimi The Good Earth Marsanne 2017

A generous and rounded Marsanne coming at you from the Yarra Valley.

Tuesday, 4 December 2018

Hidden Creek Tempranillo 2017


Tempranillo has really found a neat groove in the rocky outcrops of the Granite Belt. It's a variety that seems to continue to thrive and improve and is made consistently well throughout the region. This is a top example.

TarraWarra Rousanne Marsanne Viognier 2017



TarraWarra have two rows of each variety blended precisely to deliver a fabulous drink with texture and savoury appeal.

Airlie Bank Pinot Noir 2018

A light and easy drinking Pinot that doesn't burn a hole in the back pocket.

The Natural Wine Co Organic Shiraz 2018

Organic and preservative free Shiraz from the New South Wales Central Ranges.

Monday, 3 December 2018

Montalto Pennon Hill Pinot Noir 2017

Many entry-level wines are basic - not here. Sometimes I wonder whether Simon Black does have sub-par fruit. And if he did, where does he put it? It's clear the dregs aren't in the Pennon Hill range.