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Saltram No.1 Shiraz 2012

Saltram-no-1This is one Barossan for the cellar and it delivers some of that finesse that you might find in wines that carry a much higher price tag. Here amongst the coconut, chocolate oak offer up a spicy and smooth background to fresh cherry, cinnamon, mint, dark berry fruit. There are some mint and graphite facets on show too as the wine opens up and finishes on a mocha note. While oak makes its presence known, thanks to some larger format barrels it does not dominate or overwhelm.

While the tannins are shapely and will help keep this wine fresh for the years to come, if you cannot wait for it to mellow then you will find it better with food. Venison sausage, or a roast with all the trimmings.

Quickie review «A smooth, spicy, well cared for Barossan that shows much potential in its youth if you cannot wait for it to gain some maturity.»

Country of Origin: Australia  Date: May 2016 Price: AUD 80+ | £ | Drink: 10+ years Needs food: better with food in its youth Source: tasting

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An Australian Master from Langhorne Creek in your glass

wb-masterUntil the early 2000’s, Wolf Blass Black Label was the pinnacle of the Wolf Blass line which sported those quirky coloured tombstone shaped labels. Then came Platinum Label, a straight varietal Shiraz. A departure for the eponymous brand founded by the winemaker with the moniker of ‘the Master Blender’. Wolfgang Blass himself.

It gives a sense of continuity that this new pinnacle of the extensive Wolf Blass range is back to the original formula of a blend, albeit from a single vineyard rather than a blend of regions as well as varieties. This time 61% Cabernet and 39% Shiraz as opposed to the 51% Cabernet / 49% Shiraz varietal composition of the current 2010 vintage of Black Label. Read More

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Handpicked Collection Coonawarra Cabernet Sauvignon 2012

handpicked-collection

While Coonwarra is not the only region in Australia that has great Cabernet on offer, it is often one of Australia’s regions that is best known internationally. As it should be too, as the regional style is softly spoken fruit melded with powdery tannins. Read More

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Dougos Winery Rapsani PDO Old Vines 2012 Red

dougos-rapsani-wmWhen the Dougos family purchased this vineyard, these old vines were already established. These low yielding, bush trained vines are now 50-63 years old. The traditional Rapsani PDO wines are a blend of Xinomavro and two other red grapes: Krasato and Stavroto, that are grown exclusively in Rapsani PDO.

After spending around 20 months in French and American oak barrels, only a third of which was new, the purple hued red is spicy and fresh at heart. Fragrant pepper, liquorice, vanilla caramel and a pinch of garden herbs add complexity to the red cherry fruit. It is a nose that keeps evolving as it opens up. Read More

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Taylors (Wakefield) Tempranillo 2014

taylors-tempranillowmThere are some great finds amongst the Taylor family’s Estate range and this is one of them. The Tempranillo grapes have been sourced from their Clare Valley estate.  With an eye on doing justice to the fruit, individual portions were either cold soaked before ferment, partially fermented in stainless steel or in open fermenters before spending some time in old French oak.  

All this care has left the mulberry, blueberry fruit to speak for itself, enhanced with some pepper, violet, nutmeg and dried thyme and parsley.  As it enters the mouth, the juicy fruit has a silky polish and soft acid and tannins for structure. The length offers more cherry and black fruit amongst the subtle spice. 

Considering that you can pick this wine up in a multi-buy for less than $14 in Australia, you could say good drinking does not necessarily cost more.  A good mid week wine, or one to settle into the weekend with.  It also is a delicious base for Beouf Bourguignon.

Quickie review « Juicy, spicy berry fruit with smooth silky texture. A wine for pleasurable drinking. »

Country of Origin: Australia  Date:  May 30th, 2015   Price:  $14+  Drink: now – 5 years  Needs food: no   Source: sample

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