Jacob’s Creek Classic Riesling 2015 $7.85–$12
Humble Jacob’s Creek often upstages more expensive wines in Australian wine shows. In the recent National Wine Show of Australia, for example, this riesling’s cellar-mate, Classic Pinot Gris, topped the pinot gris class and won the trophy as the best “Dry white, other variety” in the show. Jacob’s Classic Riesling, an even better wine on my scoresheet, captures the aromatic appeal and lime-like flavour intensity of this great variety – on a delicate, dry and beautifully refreshing palate. Winemaker Bernard Hickin attributes the quality largely to fruit sourcing from several of Australia’s best riesling-growing regions.
Andrew Thomas “Six Degrees” Hunter Valley Semillon 2015 $21–$23
Hunter Valley winemaker Andrew Thomas offers an early drinking alternative to the region’s comparatively austere young semillons. By arresting fermentation before yeast converts all the grape sugar to alcohol, Thomas achieves a low-alcohol white (eight per cent) with a moderate level of sweetness from the residual grape sugar. While the sugar contributes sweetness and softness, the high acidity of the early picked grapes balances the sweetness and amplifies the delicate, pure, lemony varietal flavour. It’s a delicious twist on a normally bone-dry regional specialty.
Charles Cimicky “Trumps” Barossa Valley Shiraz 2014 $16.20–$22
Charles and Jennie Cimicky’s winery and vineyards are at Lyndoch, in the slightly cooler south of the warm Barossa Valley. Their reds, starting with the inexpensive Trumps shiraz, deliver typical Barossa generosity and softness without going over the top on oak, tannin or alcohol. As Trumps 2014 demonstrates, for Cimicky it’s all about capturing ripe, mouth-filling fruit flavours and the Barossa’s tender tannins. The ripe, supple fruit and softness give great drinking pleasure right now. There’s no reason to cellar it, simply move on to each new vintage.
Copyright © Chris Shanahan 2015
First published 5 and 6 December 2015 in goodfood.com.au and the Canberra Times