Wine review – Hewitson, Grosset and Yalumba

Hewitson Miss Harry Barossa Valley 2013 $21.85–$25
What would a bunch of hairy chested blokes make of tender, supple, perfumed Miss Harry, served alongside burly reds from Clare Valley and McLaren Vale? The group generally favours big, ripe shiraz with their post-tennis curry. But the lighter coloured Miss Harry overcame early suspicions and several drinkers came back for more. The blend of grenache, mourvedre, shiraz, cinsault and carignan provides perfume, spice, ripe fruit, supple texture and instant gratification. It’s a subtle, medium bodied red in a unique, tender, juicy Barossa style.

Grosset Clare Valley Apiana 2015 $40
Jeffrey Grosset’s Apiana combines semillon with fiano, a very old white variety from Campania, Italy. It was mentioned as early as 1240, write Jancis Robinson, Julia Harding and Jose Vouillamoz in Wine grapes (2012). They describe the variety as a “rich, waxy, strongly flavoured, fashionable, southern Italian”, cultivated in Australia by Grosset and others “looking for varieties that withstand the heat”. Grosset’s blend provides exciting drinking, with vivid citrus and melon fruit flavours and chewy, smooth texture that could indeed be called “waxy”.

Yalumba Christobel’s Barossa Semillon Sauvignon Blanc $12.35–$15
Had mainland Australia remained a few degrees further south, our vignerons may have had an answer to New Zealand sauvignon blanc, the absolute leader of Australia’s white wine market. Alas, we can’t match what the folks make in cool but sunny Marlborough at 41-degrees south. However, we can offer a bright and zesty alternative with our blends of semillon and sauvignon blanc. Early picked Barossa semillon gives a lively, zesty, citrusy tang to Christobel’s blend, while the mention of “sauvignon blanc” on the label no doubt adds commercial appeal.

Copyright © Chris Shanahan 2015
First published 24 and 25 October 2015 in and the Canberra Times