Ravensworth Canberra District Marsanne 2005, Sangiovese 2005 $22
Two wines due for release on March 22nd confirm Bryan and Jocelyn Martin’s Ravensworth as one of Canberra’s defining labels. The Marsanne is a weighty, viscous and highly distinctive drop, bristling with delicious, vibrant, honeyed flavours. And the Sangiovese rates as one the best Australian shots I’ve seen with this Italian variety. Tuscan versions range from dire to divine, with the best examples offering lifted perfume and tight elegant structure. Ravensworth is headed in the latter direction with its bright, pure fruit aroma and flavour and taut, fine tannin structure. It just needs a little time in bottle to emerge as a vibrant and sophisticated expression of the variety.
Lindemans Bin 65 Chardonnay 2005, Bin 50 Shiraz 2005 $7 to $9
Be ready for a massive new roll out of wines sealed with screw caps – led by the 2005 vintage of Lindemans popular bin range. In Melbourne two weeks ago, Chris Hatcher, winemaking boss of Fosters, said that with consumer acceptance of these seals on premium and super premium wines, the time had come to introduce screw caps on lower-priced wines, too. The first two Lindemans screw cap releases, with their focus on pure varietal fruit flavour, really suit this clean, reliable closure. The chardonnay is zesty, full flavoured and creamy textured; the Shiraz, too, is bright, fresh and fruit laden with soft, easy tannins giving structure.
Teusner Barossa Valley Joshua 2005 $24, Avatar 2004 $29
For all the talk of invaluable, very old Barossa vines, many small growers there are struggling to sell fruit — such is the severity of the grape glut and paucity of strongly branded Barossa wines from the major producers. The ready availability of such superb fruit has prompted a new generation of young winemakers, like Kym Teusner, to capture the unique and lovely flavours produced by the Valley’s old grenache, shiraz and mourvedre vines. Kym currently offers two of these wonderful GSM blends – the unoaked, juicy and delicious Joshua and the beautifully, deep, savoury and supple Avatar from the outstanding 2004 vintage.
Copyright © Chris Shanahan 2006 & 2007