Saturday, October 25, 2014

Allies Mornington Peninsula Tuerong Pinot Noir 2013

I think I have developed a new flavour sensory in wine. For me anyway. Masterstock. Chinese Masterstock. Spice. Soy sauce. Fish sauce. Spice; cinnamon, cardamon, cassia bark. Smokin hot awesomeness really. Take me down to Chinatown baby!!!

The Allies Mornington Peninsula Tuerong Pinot Noir 2013 is one of the best wines I've seen this year. Everything mentioned above plus a herbal and raspy dry mid palate. This is a real Pinot Noir drinkers Pinot Noir.

Drink with five spiced duck -  a Susan for sure
Drink till 2020
Screwcap 13%v/v $38 Brunswick East Wine Store

The Store has Arrived!!!

Its been a while hasn't it? Just been a bit busy opening MY NEW WINE STORE IN BRUNSWICK!!!!!! The Brunswick East Wine Store to be precise

A lot of you may know that I have been working on this for a while, well now it's very real and very ace. And Awesome. And Tickityboo. Everything Sweetasanut really. So come on down, or up, to 472 Lygon Street Brunswick East. You can also get me on 9384-0875 or you can come on in. Go on, come on in and check out my new hobby.

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Appellation Ballarat Pinot Noir 2010

I reckon I've had this wine about 20 times. I thought I had blogged about it before but you know what, nothing. Sorry Owen. The Appellation Ballarat Pinot Noir 2010 comes from one of the nicest blokes in the wine industry - Owen Latta - and is just so bloody good. Plenty of spice on the nose with toasted cardamon dominant. The palate is similar with once again toasted cardamon at the fore with further layers of master stock, soy sauce all held together with delicate supple tannins and funky pan juices. A ripping drop.

Drink with medium rare rib eye
Drink till 2017
Screwcap 13%v/v $32

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Montalto Mornington Peninsula Pennon Hill Chardonnay 2013

Its not exactly chardonnay weather, but hey, when in Rome whiz in the Trevie. The Montalto Mornington Peninsula Pennon Hill Chardonnay 2013 is everything I love about Oz chardonnay - lean grapefruit, integrated oak, tart white peach flesh and soft and subtle white licorice powder: I know I bang on about white licorice powder, but its there I tell ya. And the price? A bargain at sub $30.

Cannot wait for summer.This and my coal BBQ with some whiting and snapper. Yep, SOD-OFF winter.

Drink with chicken risotto now, the above when warmer.
Drink till 2018
Screwcap 13.5%v/v $27-$30

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Ruggabellus Barossa Valley Fluus 2013

My favourite South Oz producer I reckon. The Ruggabellus Barossa Valley Fluus 2013 - Grenache, Mataro, Cinsault and Syrah - has brought sexy back for this style with such unassuming style and finesse all the while walking in to the room loaded with sweaty hairy armpits; its super-suave and bogan all in one package; Sort of like The Drones - band not spy object.

Anywhoo, the wine. Dusty graphite on the nose with concentrated black fruit and savoury black olive brininess too. The palate has a very clear line of savoury gaminess and black fruit all held together with precise fine graphite like tannins. Theres almost a hint of lip smacking fish sauce at the back. This is as close to Pinot Noir from the Barossa Valley I reckon. I just love it!!!

Drink with peppered rare steak
Drink till 2018
96 Screwcap
13.6%v/v $29-$32

Cullen Margaret River Mangan Vineyard Merlot/Malbec/Petit Verdot 2013

As far as Bordeaux blends go, for me its the Right side of the Gironde that floats my boat; Merlot, Cab Franc, Petit Verdot et al. In Australia this is also the case, with the left side of Australia - Margaret River in particular. And Cullen are at the forefront as usual. The Cullen Margaret River Mangan Vineyard Merlot/Malbec/Petit Verdot 2013 is everything I love about Merlot blends - blueberries, graphite like tannins, green peppercorns and super finely balanced cut-throat acid.
This is probably not for the people who have poo-pooed Merlot because of either a stupid movie or a stupid duo, so if you follow the the latter two, good!!! Leave this to people who purely and simply love good wine.

Drink with rare kangaroo fillet
Drink till 2019
Screwcap 12.5%v/v $30-$33

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Cavallotto Piedmont Vigna Scot Dolcetto d'Alba 2012

The Cavallotto Piedmont Vigna Scot Dolcetto d'Alba 2012. The 2011 made my best of last year. This one will also and is my new Clubhouse leader.

I do love Dolcetto. This wine is just soooo beautiful and balanced and sexyasnuts and all the stuff that makes the wine drinker swoon. Full of roasted brown spices on the nose - cardamon, cinnamon and cassia bark. After a while in the glass the wine evolves with subtle scorched earth and prickly dark fruit. The palate is more spice and dark fruit with hints of salty fish sauce all held together perfectly with tight and fine tannins and acid. Superb. Just superb.

Drink till 2017
Drink with Guinness braised beef pie
Quality cork 13.5%v/v $36-$39

Saturday, June 28, 2014

My #Gineration

There's a few things I'm loving at the moment: The World Cup - obviously. The Uruguayans defending the indefensible that is Luis Suarez. And closer to home, Gin.  I'm loving Gin at the moment. Why? Because its finger-lickin-sexy-as-nuts and its from the Yarra Valley.

This is My #Gineration

There is a massive explosion right now with Gin. A phenomenon really. Negroni's. Martini's. White Lady's. G&T. Ken Bruce has gone completely mad and we LOVE IT. And reason for this is quite simply The Melbourne Gin Company - Andrew Marks, and Four Pillars - Cameron MacKenzie. Both highly respected Yarra Valley winemakers who quite obviously love Gin Thank you boys.

The Melbourne Gin Company made my best of list for 2013. Its that good. Four Pillars, most notably the Barrel Aged jobby, is quite remarkable. Cinnamon. Vanilla. Orange. White pepper. It made working on my feet for 13 hours worth I tell ya.

Knock off last night
But get in quick with the Four Pillars Barrel Aged because its here for a good time, not a long time. Stocks are seriously slender. I got mine. The world is good. Cheers.

The Melbourne Gin Company - $69
Four Pillars Rare Dry Gin -  $75
Four Pillars Barrel Aged Gin - if you see it, buy it

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Jericho Adelaide Hills Fumé Blanc 2013

Do not blink. This wine is all but sold out. Really.

The Jericho Adelaide Hills Fumé Blanc 2013 is part of a new project by the Jericho family (funny that) who if you add it up have been involved in the Australian wine scene for over 100 years. And this is the first release. Good things come to those who wait I guess.

So the wine. I guess it is no secret that I am a Sauvignon fan. A very rare beast in this industry I must say: lots of folk would rather walk blindly out in to Punt Road traffic then quaff a Savvy B. Dumbarses. Again, the wine. A great mix of pithy passionfruit and sharp pink grapefruit on the nose. The palate has an instant hit of chalky minerality followed with long dry herbal notes, more passionfruit pith and finishes with a creamy barrel leesy feel. Just great.

Drink with roast chook - will be doing that tonight. Again
Drink till 2015
Screwcap 12%v/v $24 Seddon Wine Store

Sunday, June 1, 2014

François Villard Cornas L'appel des Sereines Syrah 2011

We have a new club house leader folks. The François Villard Cornas L'appel des Sereines Syrah 2011 is quite simply sexyasnuts!!!! Tart concentrated blackberry, grippy black olive tapanade and subtle salty soy sauce are all the hallmarks that make cool climate Syrah/Shiraz the sexiest beast around. If this wine was a rockstar it would be a combination of Jeff Buckley, Mick Jagger, Jimi Hendrix and Madonna; just oozing sex appeal. Thats it. Thats all I've got on this beast.

Drink with lust
Drink till empty, or 2016
Quality cork 13%v/v $28

Pipoli Campania Aglianico Senza Solfiti 2011

Have you ever taken a sip of wine and have a wacky flavour hit your senses that makes you blurt out loud, 'Really!?!?!??! Shit, where did that come from?' The Pipoli Campania Aglianico Senza Solfiti 2011 is that wine.

A couple of weeks ago at work a customer purchased this wine wanting a wine with little or know added sulphur or preservatives. For me, this is the best wine in that bracket, but with each purchase of sulphur free wine there is a warning, or more to the point letting the punter know what they may get when they open the wine; a volatile spritzy wine due to the introduction of O2 which is the kickoff for any active yeast to metabolise. A few hours later they brought the wine back, asked me to have a look at it because they thought it had turned. I thought the wine was fine but let them get something else if they wanted.

I understand that some people have acute reactions to SO2, but there are a lot of people who think SO2 is an inorganic compound. Incorrect. SO2 is allowed in all organic wine making processes. Even if SO2 is not added in the wine making process, yeasts create SO2 as a bi-product in the ferment, so the likelihood of 100% SO2 free wine is invariably unlikely.

So back to the wine in question. As I said in the opening paragraph, 'Really!?!?!??! Shit, where did that come from?', and with every sip it was the same reaction. WOW. So the flavour profile in question? A Snickers bar. Truly. It tasted like a Snickers. It was awesome tell you. But the thing is I have had this wine on numerous occasions and the flavour has been different and wacky, and sometimes very volatile. But that's what you get when the wine has no added SO2. Its somewhat of a lottery I guess. But do not get me wrong. I love this wine.

Drink till 2016
Drink with char grilled lamb
Diam cork 13%v/v $25

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Ashton Hills Adelaide Hills Cemetery Block Pinot Noir 2013

This is a shiraz drinkers Pinot. That's a blanket statement indeed. The Ashton Hills Adelaide Hills Cemetery Block Pinot Noir 2013 dark fruit and spice on the nose with a mix of tart blood plum and toasted brown spices. The palate is what its all about though with a thick a viscous line of toasted spice, earth - blood and bone sticks out like the proverbial, sublte soy sauce, more dark fruit and soft and fine chewy tannins. SexyAsNuts!!!

Drink with BBQ duck
Drink till 2017
Screwcap 14%v/v $35ish

Sunday, May 4, 2014

Feral Brewing Company Smoked Porter

Smoking stuff is cool. Not the cigarette kind but the food kind. Last year my partner Erin gifted me a smoker and since then many sides of salmon and the lone trout have magically been transformed. And it is that smoked trout that was evident when Jeremy and I tasted this beer at work. I swear there was a smoked trout in this bottle. Maybe not everything was made to be smoked I'm tipping. But hey, whatever floats your boat I guess.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Eisacktaler Alto Adige Müller Thurgau 2011

Is Müller Thurgau:

A. A German Footballer
B. A 1930's burlesque performer
C. A manscaping technique
D. A little known grape variety

Well obviously its D, a grape variety, although A or B could easily pass at a bit of a stretch I reckon; never let the truth get in the way of a good story I say.

So, Müller Thurgau. A ripping aromatic originating from I have no idea but finding a ripping home in northern Italy. The Eisacktaler Alto Adige Müller Thurgau 2011 is sexyasnuts and delicious all at the same time (even if the label is a bit naff. A slight honeyed and viscous nose, the palate has layers of semi-sweet to savoury dry and back again; ginger, green spices, mandarin, honey all compete at various stages for your attention. Cracking stuff.

Drink with fatty pork chops
Drink till 2015
Diam cork 12.5%v/v $33 Seddon Wine Store

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Rieslingfreak Eden Valley Reverence of Riesling No. 4 2013

The Breakfast Club. Ferris Buellers Day Off. Sixteen Candles. Rieslingfreak. Who knew John Hughes loved Riesling?

A new famous John Hughes, out of South Oz, is smitten with Rizza. And why not. The No. 4 in a series of five is talcy, limestony, lemony all with balanced acid(y). Its a ripper that will not punch a whole in the back of your throat courtesy of out of control acid. This is all checked. And balanced. And checked....

Drink with fish and chips
Drink now
Screwcap 11.5%v/v $22 Seddon Wine Store

La Bruja Averia Madrid Comando G Grenache 2012

Beautiful. A Pinot Noir drinkers Grenache, Tart. Raspy. Dirty. Sexyasnuts - that's the technical term by the way. Ethereal. This is quite a stunning wine if you haven't hooked on yet.

The La Bruja Averia Madrid Commando G Grenache 2012, or Comando G, is a caloboration of five younbg Spanish lads who share a passion for Grenache and Pinot Noir. It shows. Look out for it. Buy it. Drink it. Repeat.

Drink with charred lamb
Drink till 2017
98 - new clubhouse leader for 2014
Quality cork 14%v/v $39 Seddon Wine Store

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Girabaldi Piedmont Nebbiolo 2011

Ripe and juicy and stuck in a room with what seems to be a low ceiling. The Girabaldi Piedmont Conca d'Oro Nebbiolo 2011 is a wine that needs some air; either a good decanting or double decanting. A good decanting will do. After all of this you get a youthful Nebbiolo soaking in slick layers of bitter chocolate, dried flowers and herbs, tar, and what was a warmer than usual winter, a lick of warming alcohol - 14%v/v. A great little Nebbiolo and only $26. Bargain!!!

Drink with lamb shanks
Drink till 2018
Quality cork 14%v/v $26 Seddon Wine Store

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Express Winemakers Great Southern Shiraz 2012

'Its the end of the world as we know it...' REM, Document, 1987.

Its not the Armageddon but simply the edge of the world: Albany style deep in the SW of Western Australia. Its a great label represents exactly what the great south west is all about. Just a little bit of jingoistic pride.

The Express Winemakers Great Southern Shiraz 2012 is a new project (aren't they all these days) from two young bucks from out West, and if this is anything to go by, these two lads have a smokin hot future in front of them. So the wine...

Deep red in the glass, the wine takes a while in the glass to get going and when it does layers of slate, blackberry and black licorice waft up the nose. The palate is very chewy at first with fine grainy tannins with elements of black olive and soy/fish sauce at the back; that's a good flavour for me. Over all this wine was really singing in the glass on the second and third days. How that happened in my house is a serious head scratcher.

Drink with lasagne
Drink till 2017
Screwcap 14%v/v $26 Seddon Wine Store

Friday, March 7, 2014

Finally!!! 2013 in review - The Best

You can throw all the cliches you want at this one, but finally I am releasing my best of 2013. But hey, if James Halliday can release the Wine Companion in August with the following year's title on it with current release wines then, 'what the heckity heck bang chuck', as my five year old son Henry would say. Sorry James.

There is also a new moniker to add to the blog: The Paul Keating Wine, '...the recession we had to have' here becomes, 'the wine you have to have'. Yeah, what are you going to do hey.

So, 2013 hey. For me it was dominated by reds and a few steamy imports. So without further adieu and the blah blahs, here we have the best of 2013.

Mac Forbes Strathbogie Ranges RS16 Riesling 2013 - a most beautiful wine with the RS16 effectively telling the drinker that it has 16 grams per litre of residual sugar. But you wouldn't know. Sexy as nuts this one.

Man O' War Waiheke Island Dreadnought 2009 - pretty much the perfect Right bank blend you can have; from the Right bank or for anywhere for that matter. Stunning balance of fruit weight and minerality and an early club house leader.

BK Adelaide Hills Cult Syrah 2012 - the 2011 of this was my fave for 2012 and an example of certain wine experts going far to fucking early in writing off 2011 (Just today sampled a Geelong 2011 Pinot Noir that was simply singing!!!). Superb balance of cool climate Syrah - blackberry, soy sauce and black olive tapanade. Will not be the last time you see those tasting notes typed. Sorry no pic, must have deleted.

Sutton Grange Bendigo Fairbank Rose 2013 - Not only the best Rose's of last year but almost the top dog. A blend of Syrah, Cabernet Sauvignon and a squirt of Merlot (yes Merlot you dilettantes), this wine got me with its classic onion skin colour and funky fermier cider mid palate. Oink oink!!!

Precipice Yarra Valley Syrah 2012 - Pipped at the post for wine in show at the Yarra Valley Wine Show. Not bad for a bloke making his first wine on his own. And the bloke is Marty Singh. Watch this name.

Cavallotto Piedmont Dolceto d'Alba 2011 - I love Dolcetto and so should you: tart, crunchy, little tickle of herbs, earth, sex and other wicked stuff. Just get it.

The Melbourne Gin Company - Save the World - drink Gin. This one. Go on. Nice one Marksy!!!

Il Borghetto Toscana Montigiano Sangiovese 2011 - This is the wine that stopped me dead in my tracks. Seriously. What a wine. Seriously (again), this wine could be confused with a rootin-tootin red Burgundy. It is that good.

Giovanni Almondo Piedmont Roero Arneis 2010 - A wine that delivers an uncanny balance of tart bitter lemon and grapefruit with beautiful ripe pear and quince. A stunner.

Vinea Marson Heathcote Syrah 2008 - Only the Bard can do this justice. A near perfect wine, but 100/100 really.

So there you have it. There were definitely some wines that are unlucky not to feature; Stoney Vineyard, Abbazia Di Novacella and Wickhams Road. But hey, 2014 is a big year, or 10 months to go anyway.

But the Paul Keating wine for 2013 - Il Borghetto Toscana Montigiano Sangiovese 2011. Twas the clubhouse leader back in September and kept the lead all the way to midnight December 31, 2013.

Special thanks and recognition to John, Paul, George and Ringo and the all time classic 'Revolver' playing throughout my banging of keys. xxooxx

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Precipice Yarra Valley Hyde Park Vineyard Syrah 2012

The coolest of cool climate Syrahs; cool label, cool wine maker, cool cool. SuperCoola!!!

The Precipice Yarra Valley Hyde Park Vineyard Syrah 2012 is the first solo outing by Oakridge stalwart Marty Singh and what a first outing indeeed. The wine is jam packed with concentrated blackberry, black olive tapanade and soy sauce; all classic cool climate characteristics I reckon. The wine is just off the charts and keeps getting cooler with the lookalike Brunswick Barista hipster on the label. C'mon, you know you've seen a bloke like that making coffee in Brunswick somewhere!!!

Just so smokin hot!!!

Drink till 2018
Drink with BBQ lamb chops
Screwcap 13%v/v $33 Seddon Wine Store

Melbourn Gin Company - Too much too Good!!!

One of the finds for 2013 for me is this belter; The Melbourne Gin Company out of the Yarra Valley is so smokin hot that my liver, and that of my partner and two very good friends this summer has taken quite a beating. But remember, the liver is evil and must be punished.

Distilled from rain water run off from the Gembrook Hill winery where man-about-town Andrew Marks for the past few years has been tinkering with batches and has quite simply nailed it with this bad boy.

All aromatics, five native I believe, are stilled individually giving this blend a purity of spice and fruit that I have not come across before; clean white pepper, subtle citrus and gorgeous white spice all play a part in delivering a smooth, elegant and compelling mouth feel that one bottle just doesn't cut it.

And the garnish? citrus by all means but instead of the lemon/lime flesh, try grating the zest in to the gin - with tonic - or something different would be the above picture; peppercorn flowers and leaves found in many parks and near train stations all over Melbourne. As Split Enz said many years ago, 'why don't you give it a whirl...' Go on!!!

Available at all good independent wine retailers for about $70

Brumont Gascogne Gros Manseng-Sauvignon Sec 2011

As summer whites go, this is it. The Brumont Gascogne Gros Manseng-Sauvignon Sec 2011. And yes it has a lick of Sauvignon Blanc in it so those Savvy B poopooers stop reading here... ya flogs.

Smokin hot nose of dried grass clippings and tropical fruit - guava comes through. And once again, Savvy B is here and is all class giving the Gros Manseng bright acid and structure. This one is a winner.

Drink till 2016
Drink with mango chicken salad
Diam cork 12.5%v/v Seddon Wine Store $23

Monday, January 27, 2014

Sutton Grange Bendigo Fairbank Rosé 2013

The best Rosé In Australia. That's pretty much it. Sutton Grange Bendigo Fairbank Rosé 2013. Red fruit - tart; Acid - bright; Freshness - there. But the big winner is a flavour that you just don't see in Rosé, be it here or the old world. The flavour is French fermier cider.  I cannot explain it, its just there. And its great. Smokin Hot Great.

Drink with ouzo cured smoked salmon, made by me and cold
Drink till 2015
Screwcap 12.5%v/v $25 Seddon Wine Store

Monday, January 20, 2014

Artigiano Sicily Grillo 2012

There is so much to do...

It is now 2014. Usually I will post my top wines of the year either at the end of that year or the very start of the next. Right now there are just too many good wines waiting to find their way on this site and all while I am setting up the Brunswick East Wine Store; this blog must feel like the unwanted mistress right now.

So this will be the first of many short sharp and succinct look at some beauites before I compile the best of 2013.

The Artigiano Sicily Grillo 2012. Bright and briney with layers of preserved lemon and limestone. Its just $15 and quite simply stonkingly good and gluggable. Just get it.

Drink with BBQ baby sardiners
Drink now
Screwcap 13%v/v $15 Seddon Wine Store