2009 Waverley Estate Reserve Semillon

A: Bright and enticing medium gold

N: Slightly muted bouquet of lemon curd, wildflowers, apricot and slathering of butter. Still developing.

P: A low alcohol wine with juicy acidity and high glycerol gives a full body palate with beautifully developed flavours of apricot, zesty lemon, lemon curd, and that beautiful oiliness of an older Sem. A very long finish.

Great freshness in the glass inspite of age and will continue to evolve. There’s great balance between the fruit and flavour intensity and the acidity, so expect good things in years to come. Drink now or keep and enjoy another 7+ years.

https://waverleyestate.com.au/

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NSW Top 40 2012 – 90 minutes of top notch wines

October 25, 2012

It started as a simple day, with fresh breathe of wind, sun and trip to work. The excited mounted – because I was heading to the NSW Top 40 Trade Tasting. It’s simple – all wineries that produce wine in New South Wales, Australia submit their what they think is a good example of what they do to be JUDGED. Out of all those…only 40 come in the Top 40. (Funny that…)

And the trophy winners are:

2012 Citibank NSW Wine Awards Trophy Winners

Citibank Wine of the Year – Hungerford Hill 2007 Epic Shiraz (Hunter Valley)

Best Sparkling – Courabyra Wines 2001 “805” Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Pinot Meunier (Tumbarumba)
Twit: 01 Courabyra Wines 805 Sparkling – my new friend. $55. A steal! Tumbarumba, my xmas drinking 🙂

Best Young Riesling – Nick O’Leary 2012 Riesling (Canberra District) – personally I think Ravensworth is better but then that’s from over 600 Riesling judged from around Australia, and some Internationals at the International Riesling Challenge, held in Canberra. More on THAT trip later.
Twit: 12 Nick O’Leary Riesling – nose doesn’t quite translate to palate, expect month sweet. Good stuff tho. Go ACT Riesling!

NSW Department of Primary Industries Best Young Semillon – Audrey Wilkinson Vineyard 2012 “The Ridge” Semillon

Twit: 10 Audrey Wilkinson Semillon – plenty of develop drink now, not enough on palate to hook me

Best Young Dry White – Other Varieties – Berton Vineyards 2012 “Metal Label” Vermentino (Riverina)

Twit: 12 Berton Vineyards Vermentino – a good version from the main stream. Floral fruit musk sticks

Longfellows Insurance Best Young Chardonnay – Pepper Tree Wines 2011 “Venus Block” Reserve Chardonnay (Orange)

Twit: 11 Pepper Tree Orange Chardonnay – subtle fresh tropics and citrus. Diverting.

Best Mature Dry White – Audrey Wilkinson Vineyard 2006 Museum Reserve Semillon (Hunter Valley)

Twit: 06 Audrey Wilkinson Museum Semillon – so fresh, good develop, depth, and some good secondary characters. Yum!

Wine Odyssey Best Young Pinot Noir – Tertini Wines 2009 Reserve Pinot Noir (Southern Highlands)

Twit: 09 Tertini Res Pinot – game cherry and match!

AMCOR Stelvin Best Young Shiraz – Tallavera Grove 2011 Shiraz (Hunter Valley)

Twit: 11 Talavera Grove Hunter Shiraz – its playing hide and seek with me. Beguiling. Fruity. Explosive mouthfeel – smooth as a baby’s bottom!

Classic Oak Best Young Dry Red – Other Varieties – Skimstone 2011 Barbera (Mudgee)

Twit: 11 Skimstone Mudgee Barbera – sex. Date tonight? Bring this. That’s the nose, palate is more subtle. Find a bottle and claim it.

CCL Labels Best Mature Dry Red – Hungerford Hill 2007 Epic Shiraz (Hunter Valley)

Twit: 07 Hungerford The Epic Shiraz – just like the name says, epic. Only if you dare, I’d like to sit back now 😉

Best Sweet White – De Bortoli 2008 Deen De Bortoli Botrytis Semillon (Riverina) – now I didn’t try it at the show but I have tried this little beauty earlier – impressive.

My raving twits of the day are in their allocated positions, below are the remainder that filled out the Top 40…and tell you what, I have some favourites!

WHITES

11 Artemis Riesling – curious beast, its warming and refreshing in one. Good texture. Can’t wait for the Pinot, good times.

12 Orange Highland Wines Sauvignon Blanc – easy drink style, no cat pee.

12 Toppers Mountain Gerwurz – musky, turkish delight, smooth and just right.

06 Tyrells HVD Semillon – interesting. Bring food. Go picnic. Bring this

12 Tulloch Vineyrd Select Semillon – grassy. Drinks well

12 Thomas Wines Braemore Semillon – subtle, deeper feelings. More for the connoisseur of good young Sems

12! Thomas Wines OC Semillon – yes yes yes – think when Harry Met Sally scene. No faking

07 Pokolbin Estate Riesling – yes, frm the Hunter. And I don’t knw why they dnt do more of it! Beautiful.

07 McLeish Estate Semillon – I’m raving I haven’t found this before. Has everything I’ve ever wanted in a Sem. Personality, zing, love + sun

11 McLeish Estate Semillon – kiwi? A lively one this, there’s a future and its bright as a spark. Keep an eye out.

10 Leogate Semillon – almost reminds me of watermelon on nose! Another one for a hot date, would stand up to wasabi!

09 Gartleman Semillon – good staple to have on hand, zesty! Austerer style

09 First Creek Reserve Semillon – sings to me in frm the glass and on palate. New winemaker doing big moves!

11 Ascella Chardonnay (biodynamic) – complex, funky w personality and all for $20RRP! Gentle French oak, grab it if ur a Charddy lover!!

REDS

11 de iuliis the stephen – more grwn up sweeter fruit. It wants to be mine. Nice choc hit to the back.

11 de iuliis shiraz – oh my. I’m getting happy, just the way I like it and only $25 RRP! Lovely choc fruit silk and balance

11 Pepper Tree Coquun Hunter Shiraz – almost regal,black cherry finish. Good balance. Drink slowly.

11 Tyrells Hunter Shiraz Cab – more. Perfumed. Eucalypt and mint. Tight tannins.

10 Tyrells Vat 8 Hunter Hilltops Shiraz Cab – phew! – subtle minx

10 Grove Estate Nebiolo – subtle, elegant and a mystery that invites you in for starts and seconds.

08 Logan Cab Merlot – dusky sunset in a glass. Bitey tannin sum alco heat but good fruit

10 Tertini Pinot – more subtle, chalky, needs help with food

2005 Thasos Moscatel de Setubal DOC

Vin doux Naturel

17% alc

Grapes: Moscatel de Setubal

 

Almost amber in colour with orange peel on the nose. This is a light style of dessert wines with pleasantly fresh orange and rancio characters. Reminiscent of fresh Tokay…yummy. This is one fantastic value refreshing dessert wine that should be shared with friends and loved ones.

There’s a certain freshness to it, a sense of fun and carefree lifestyle. Not a typical dessert wine and not a table wine. A wine with personality, verve and style.

2002 Lillypilly Noble Blend

Alc: 12.5%
Grapes: 80% Sauvignon Blanc, 10% Semillon, 5% Muscat of Alexandria, 5% Riesling

I’m not a dessert wine drinker. Rarely would be seen drinking a sticky and it’s a shame as there are some amazing things out there. Topaque (formerly known as tokay), Muscat and Botrytis affected (also Cordon-Cut). It’s a confusing world of techniques that one really doesn’t need to know, just remember your preferred style. Botrytis is more famous style, made popular and mainstream by such heavy weights as Chateau de d’Yquem, France and De Bortoli Noble One, Riverina.
And here comes the age of Lillypilly! (At least I hope so as it so richly deserves the honour!)
Chateau de d’Yquem is a Semillon and Sauvignon Blanc blend affected by the noblest of rots, botrytis cinerea. Noble One is a straight Semillon. Lillypilly is blend of four grapes and for that it does get the extra complexity. It is lusciously sweet, with apricots and lighter honey notes, fresh honeycomb straight from the hive, some citrus notes and amazingly well balanced acidity. Because for me, that’s where the dessert wines fall down hard – too sticky.

I drank a bottle of this without realising. The problem? The bottle ran out.
Do yourself a favour buy some because I definitely will be stocking up on this.

Awards
TROPHY International Sweet Wine Challenge 2011 Griffith
DOUBLE GOLD  5 Nations Wine Challenge 2011 Sydney
GOLD Winewise Small Vigerons Awards 2011 Canberra
GOLD  Mundus Vini, Germany 2011
TOP 100 Sydney International Wine Competition 2011
BLUE GOLD Sydney International Wine Competition 2011
25 Trophies & 28 Gold Medals in all

Retsina…To finally tasting it!

Retsina.

I’ve seen it sitting on shelves at bottle shops and also mentioned in writing of aeons past, in a book where a character found refuge in a bottle while stuck in Greece. The question for me was always what would be so appealing about a basic wine combined with resin?!

So what is retsina?

Well, it’s a traditional Greek wine. Long history. Has been in production for at least 2000 years. Yes, two millennia. Or as the fount of all wisdom tells us:

“Today the traditional grape for Retsina is Savatiano with Assyrtiko and Rhoditis sometimes blended in, as well as other grape varieties throughout Greece. On the island of Rhodes, Athiri is the main grape. Modern Retsina is made following the same winemaking techniques of white wine or rosé with the exception of small pieces of Aleppo Pine resin added to the must during fermentation. The pieces stay mixed with the must, and elute an oily resin film on the liquid surface; at racking the wine is clarified and the solids and surface film are removed from the finished wine.[1] Nowadays, protecting the new wine from oxidation is easy to do with far simpler means and much less resin is used for retsina than traditionally called for. Such wines lack the pungent “whiff of turpentine” streak of old, and are considered ideal accompaniments to such strong-tasting local cuisine as pastırma or garlic dips.”  thanks to http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Retsina
 

Anyway, I digress. I am currently enjoying a glass of said nectar – from Tsantali. It’s an acquired taste. Must be chilled. Though, I can see how this would be really good with seafood, mostly cold prawns maybe fish caviche etc. And yes, I am sitting on my balcony. With music. Wine. Thinking of food. And since Wikipedia mentioned garlic, I am now thinking of that as well.

Grant Burge Miamba Shiraz 2004

It’s 6.40pm after a long hard day. I need a drink, so I opt for a bottle of Miamba. I first sampled this one back in 2006 when working for Vintage Cellars and they were flogging it to their members over the phone. Loved it then and I loved it even more now.

Dusty. Magical. Plums. Juicy. Violets. Dark. Sensuous. Sensational.

The feel of midnight blue superfine silk flowing over skin. A lead fist in a velvet glove.

It’s a dark and dense blood red, almost black. Impenetrable and inviting. Spicey. Punchy. Forward. Incredibly long intense blackcurrant finish. Cedar. Cigar box. Dark chocolate. Chocolate covered fruit. Stunningly mysterious. Chewy tannins.

A hedonist’s delight!

24hrs later –

Still a little dusty but it has mellowed with more floral characters coming through. Still fruity though! With plenty of life. Red and blackcurrants, whiff of warm plums. Good dose of dark chocolate and i’m getting a glimpse of aniseed coming through.

On the palate, intense flavours of blackcurrant and chocolate. Lively acidity and slightly grippier and dirtier tannins then last night. It packs a punch for sure. Rich roast of lamb and potato. Rosemary! There’s some rosemary in there…

Like a hot chocolate with a hint of chilli. Lovely little bit of spice with heat.

48 hours later –

It’s even more complex and divine. Has opened up further and is even more hedonistically brilliant! Cloves, cinnamon, dark cherries, chocolate, plums and raspberries coming through. So much smoother on the palate – the spice is more subdued but still very much there. The tannins are grippy, the acidity incredibly juicy. Stunning long warm finish, with wild cherries and spices dominating. Utterly delicious. This is a lovely example of a blockbuster shiraz with a distinct chocolate aftertaste.

72 hours –

Smoother and chocolaty palate with the structure coming through as the fruit recedes. Not even starting the decline. This is definitely a very long lived wine. Would love to try this again and again as the years roll on!