Wine review – Xanadu, West Cape Howe, Shaw and Smith, Majella, Moppity Vineyards and Pig in the House

Xanadu Stevens Road Cabernet Sauvignon 2011 $57–$65 Stevens Road vineyard, Margaret River, Western Australia Xanadu’s classy cabernet comes from “21 rows of Houghton clone cabernet at the bottom of Block 3” [of the Stevens vineyard, planted 1989], says the company’s website. This tiny batch of grapes made one of the purest, most elegant and harmonious […]

Beer review – Red Hill Brewery and Mash Brewing

Red Hill Brewery Imperial Stout 330ml bottle $7.50 Karen and Dave Golding grow their own hops right alongside their Mornington Peninsula brewery. The label boasts “Lashing of our own hops” in their imperial stout. But the hops simply balance the stout’s powerful roasted-coffee, bitter-chocolate flavours and warming 8.1-per-cent-alcohol. This seasonal specialty is available at Plonk, […]

Zierholz Brewery eyes Kingston

Brewer Christoph Zierholz hopes to move his Fyshwick brewery and bar to the planned new arts precinct adjacent to Kingston’s busy bus depot markets. Zierholz describes the proposed move, currently under negotiation, as “an exciting prospect”. Should the move come to fruition, Zierholz hopes to establish with the brewery a beer hall where he can, […]

Wine review – Mount Majura, Helm and Santolin

Mount Majura Tempranillo 2013 $42 Mount Majura vineyard, Canberra District, ACT Frank van de Loo’s 2013 tempranillo offers greater richness and power than the excellent but leaner style from the cool 2012 vintage. Blended from three separate blocks of this Spanish variety on the 9.3ha Mount Majura vineyard, it combines fresh, vibrant fruity flavours with […]

Beer review – Bridge Road Brewery and Boatrocker

Bridge Road Brewery Beechworth Pale Ale 330ml 6-pack $23 A visit to Ben Kraus’s brewery should be on every to-do list for Beechworth visitors. Beer always tastes best where it’s brewed. And it’s a bonus when top-notch craft brewers are also available widely through retailers. Kraus’s pale ale delivers rich, smooth, malty flavour, seasoned from […]

Matso’s – Kimberley brewer

Our long and dusty drive from Kununurra to Broome, via the Gibb River Road, finished tasting beer on the veranda of Matso’s brewery Broome. This remarkable business produces several familiar beer styles – Hit the Toad Lager, Smokey Bishop Dark Lager and Pearler’s Pale. But its quirkier brews, including the very popular ginger beer, appear […]