Wine review — Ravensworth, Surveyors Hill & First Creek

Ravensworth Canberra District Sangiovese 2005 $22
I recommended this now gold medal winner back in March as a wine that “just needs a little time in bottle to emerge as a vibrant and sophisticated expression of the variety”.  As noted earlier this is one of the best Australian shots I’ve seen with this Italian variety, standing out for its bright, pure fruit aroma and flavour and taut, fine tannin structure. It’s developed beautifully with six months in the bottle and should continue to build in complexity and interest for many years. It bowled us judges over at last week’s Canberra Regional Wine Show.

Surveyors Hill Canberra District Riesling 2006 $25
Leigh Hobba’s Surveyors Hill vineyard produced the fruit for this stunning trophy and gold medal winning riesling. It was made for Leigh at Roger and Faye Harris’s Brindabella Hills Winery, about a kilometre from the Surveyors Hill vineyard. Leigh tells me that each year Roger gives trainee winemaker, Brian Sinclair, a project wine of his own and in 2006 this was it. The wine shows pristine varietal aromatics and intense but delicate palate with beautiful, fresh acid balance. It’s classic riesling and could hold its own in any company. Release is imminent, enquiries to Leigh Hobba 6230 2046

First Creek Canberra District Viognier 2005 $20
Expatriate Canberran, Jim Chatto, makes First Creek Viognier at the Monarch Winery, Pokolbin, from fruit grown on the Fischer family’s Nanima vineyard, Murrumbateman. It was one of two outstanding viognier’s exhibited at the Canberra Regional Show. In contrast to the purely varietal silver-medal runner up, our gold-medallist was a notably more complex wine showing the textural, aroma and flavour impacts of barrel fermentation beautifully integrated with the plush, distinctive, apricot-like viognier flavour. Like most top-notch viogniers, it’s a wine of huge flavour impact and should be savoured in small, intense doses. Cellar door phone 02 4998 7293.

Copyright © Chris Shanahan 2006 & 2007