Wolf Blass Gold Label Eden Valley Riesling 2012 $14.55–$25
Wolf Blass’s new release continues the run of brilliant rieslings from the great 2012 vintage. Once a blend of fruit from the Clare and Eden Valleys, the wine is from now on to be all Eden Valley as “that’s closer to our roots”, says winemaker Chris Hatcher. It’s a delicious wine all through, from the delicate, lime-like aroma and through its vibrant, intense, irresistibly fruity, fine-textured palate. Though a fruity, drink-now style, Gold Label, should develop well in bottle for four or five years. Retail discounts can be substantial, so watch for the specials.
Seppeltsfield Barossa Valley Grenache Rose 2011 $17
Rose comes in many forms, from light, dry and savoury with pale, onion-skin colour to much richer, fuller styles bordering on red. Seppeltsfield’s version, sourced from the estate’s old bush-pruned grenache vines, sits square in blush-pink rose territory. Those beautiful old vines, and low-temperature fermentation, deliver amazingly vibrant fruit flavours, reminiscent of strawberry and Turkish delight. It’s light, fresh and fruity on the palate and a small amount of residual grape sugar (eight grams per litres) adds to its fleshy, drink-now appeal. (Available at seppeltsfield.com.au). Tasted at Seppeltsfield on 25 July.
Tyrrell’s Old Winery
Hunter Valley Chardonnay 2012 $10.45–$12.99
Old Winery Chardonnay, first made in 1979 and fine-tuned ever since, rates among Australia’s best budget chardonnays. It combines liveliness and freshness with chardonnay’s full flavour and a rich, smooth texture. The appealing, ripe, varietal flavour comes from good fruit. And the rich, smooth texture, says Bruce Tyrrell, comes from “all the techniques of solids in the ferment and lees stirring but on a larger scale in a tank rather than a small barrel”. At the recent Hunter Wine Show, Tyrrell’s once again hauled in a great pile of medals and trophies.
Copyright Chris Shanahan 2013
First published 8 September 2013 in the Canberra Times