Wine review — Alinga, Brokenwood and Grant Burge

Alinga Four Winds Vineyard Canberra District Sangiovese 2009 $19
This is one of the juiciest, loveliest Australian Sangiovese’s I’ve tasted. Jaime Lunney made it from the Yarra Yering clone of the variety, grown on her family’s Murrumbateman vineyard. It’s medium coloured and bodied and finishes with sangiovese’s typical firm, fine, savoury tannins. But it differs from most of the local versions in its buoyant, lively, earthy perfume – a characteristic that carries over to the delicious, drink-me-now palate. I know little of this clone. But they say clonal selection is vital with sangiovese. Whatever it is, there’s something very good going on here.

Brokenwood

  • Beechworth Pinot Gris 2010 $25
  • Hunter Valley ILR Reserve Semillon 2005 $32–$35

Brokenwood’s is a rich, drink-now version of pinot gris – grown in Beechworth Victoria and made in the Hunter Valley. It’s crisp and fresh, with pear-like varietal flavour, rich but fine mid-palate texture and a little grippiness in the finish – a signature of the variety. The ILR Reserve Semillon is restrained, fine expression of this classic Hunter style. How such a hot region produces such fine-boned whites, I don’t know. But at five years it’s still zingy, lemon fresh with just the first subtle notes of ageing – a little toastiness in the aroma and flavour and a little richness in the texture.

Grant Burge Barossa Valley

  • Filsell Shiraz 2008 $36–$40
  • Meshach Shiraz 2005 $145

Grant Burge owns substantial areas of vines towards the cooler southern end of the Barossa Valley in the vicinity of Williamstown. The Filsell vineyard, with vines planted in the early 1920s, is the pick of Burge’s holdings and provided the fruit for both Filsell and the company’s flagship, Meshach. Filsell shows the power and body of the hot vintage, with generous, deep, chocolaty fruit flavours ¬– coated lavishly with the Barossa’s tender, soft tannins. Despite it size and intensity, Meshach, looking young at five years, is beautifully proportioned, seductive and silky textured. It’s bound to become even finer over time, ultimately emerging as a powerful but elegant expression of the Barossa style.

Copyright © Chris Shanahan 2010

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