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Lethbridge Allegra Chardonnay: 2004 TWF Chardonnay in 2018 – The Year in Review Kumeu River Chardonnay retrospective 2018 Penfolds media circus Riot Rose, wine in a can Rootstock pulls up stumps Penfolds goes to infinity and beyond Mildara Coonawarra Cabernet Sauvignon 2004 Test: Repour Grenache Project 17 Grosset Wines Retrospective 2017 Penfolds G3 launched New wind blows at Thousand Candles Nineteen Eighty-Four: Californian Cabernet

Lethbridge Allegra Chardonnay: 2004 – 2015

Vineyard is the Rebenberg (Mt Duneed) vineyard, planted by Ken & Joy Campbell in 1968 to Semillon, Sauvignon Blanc, Malbec, Cabernet Sauvignon (Malbec & Cabernet were later grafted over to Shiraz). The Chardonnay was added in 1981 planted to P58 and a mixture of Bernard Clones. In regards to winemaking, they’re pretty much the same: fully […]


TWF Chardonnay in 2018 – The Year in Review

It’s hard to believe that another year has passed since the Brisbane tasting panel’s December 2017 review of the tWf trio’s work on top end Australian Chardonnay (those which scored 96 points or better) but indeed it has. So once again the panel assembled to review the 2018 Chardonnay guidance given by the three Winefront […]

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Kumeu River Chardonnay retrospective 2018

It feels like a very long time since June 2018, but the extraordinary tasting made available to GW and I rings loud in the cloister of the wine brain. Visiting Kumeu Estate is of course formative for the New Zealand wine enthusiast, and an exceptional opportunity to get a feel for history coupled to an […]

penfolds media tasting

Penfolds media circus

The Penfolds circus. Every year Penfolds holds media tastings of its new super premium releases. These tastings are held around the world, a fair bit out from the release date (4 October 2018, in this case; tasting was in August) with a publishing embargo in place so that, if you swallow the story whole, each […]

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Riot Rose, wine in a can

McLaren Vale winemaker Tom O’Donnell is on to the wine-in-a-can movement in a big way: big on quality, that is. Personally I’m not yet at the stage where I’m shopping for wines in a can but I like the idea, like the vessel itself, love the idea of it as a take-on-a-camping-trip essential (lightweight to […]

verona wine bar

Rootstock pulls up stumps

Too bold, too good, too successful; the wild ride that was the Rootstock Sydney Festival has come to an end, and the wine world in its entirety will now be lesser. Today the organisers of Rootstock Sydney announced that “Australia’s largest natural wine festival has called last drinks”. It had run for five years. It […]

penfolds art

Penfolds goes to infinity and beyond

It’s hard to know where to start. Australian wine company Penfolds today jumped the biggest of sharks: it will from now on be a global wine producer rather than merely a global wine brand. From now on, starting as soon as possible, Penfolds will source and make wine out of both the Napa Valley in […]

mildara cabernet art TWF

Mildara Coonawarra Cabernet Sauvignon 2004

It doesn’t happen every day. Indeed it’s only happened a few times in the 16 year history of The Winefront, and two of those times it happened because of the same source. A wine was flicked my way, by post, off the bat of a subscriber. No affiliations, no barrows, just a wine lover who […]

repour packet

Test: Repour

On February 28 I opened a bottle of the lovely Punt Road Gamay 2017 in among a vast number of other wines. I immediately wanted to stop tasting and just drink it, but alas life wasn’t on my side. I would tip it. And move to the next wine. Or normally I would, except that […]

grenache project duval single bottle

Grenache Project 17 – A celebration of single vineyard grenache

All manner of groups have proposed a collective yet individual approach to a winemaking schemata, but by my reckoning none so far where a single vineyard of grenache has been explored through the lens of six, diverse winemakers. New territory is being broken.   


Grosset Wines Retrospective 2017 – a tasting of riesling and cabernets

Earlier in 2017, Jeffrey Grosset hosted an intimate session showcasing current releases and a slew of back vintage wine. The presentation was accompanied by some candid home snaps and a detailed explanation of sites and vintages, but perhaps most telling was the candid home pictures, included one of Grosset in his first, own winery, bearded, […]

penfolds G3 beauty

Penfolds G3 launched

It’s not so much three bottles of Grange for the price of one as one bottle of Grange for the price of three. It’s a blend of Australia’s most famous blend. It’s an NV red wine, in a heavy bottle, for $3000 a pop. Everything about it is wrong save for three things: rarity, prestige, […]

thousand candles redone

New wind blows at Thousand Candles

It was the best of stories. It was the worst of stories. Thousand Candles launched with a grand vision and an even grander vineyard and the perfect team of people to execute it. It had a beautifully-designed label, the hottest winemaker in the country at the time – Bill Downie – and a viticulturist as […]

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Nineteen Eighty-Four: Californian Cabernet

Decanter magazine reported of the 1984 Californian harvest, “This was one of those rare too good to be true vintages that was big in size and ranged from good to excellent in quality. The harvest was early due to a hot spell that kicked it off and a long period warm weather followed to keep harvesters […]

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Rudolf Trossen Madonna Purus 2017

21 January 2019

Idiosyncratic, fascinating, outstanding and thrilling expressions from Mosel, Rudi Trossen marches to his own beat. The vineyards are excellent and tended organically, the wines, particularly under this ‘Purus’ label, see no additions including no sulphur. There are always so many dimensions to Trossen wines. This wine is born from a steep, slaty slope more or […]

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Posted in biodynamic, Germany, organic, riesling0 Comments

Municipal Riesling

Municipal Wines Whitegate Vineyard Riesling 2017

21 January 2019

From a small scale producer based out of Strathbogie Ranges. The vineyard is 30-or-so years old and at just shy of 500 metres above sea level. As I understand, this riesling sees some skin contact during fermentation. A producer to keep an eye on, when you do find the wines.

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Posted in riesling, Strathbogie Ranges0 Comments

billy button riesling

Billy Button The Torment Riesling 2018

21 January 2019

The wines of Jo Marsh have a great deal of immediate appeal, as a rule, though you get the feeling that she reserves a special place for riesling. “2018 was the first year where I felt like I didn’t have to compromise,” she says.

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Posted in King Valley, riesling0 Comments

shy susan riesling

Shy Susan Gewurztraminer 2016

21 January 2019

Direct from the website: “The 2016 season was quite warm and early with fruit being harvested in March. Pristine fruit was hand harvested from the White Hills vineyard at Relbia (in the hills south of the Tamar Valley). The fruit was then gently de-stemmed to tank press and allowed to soak on skins for 12 […]

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Posted in other whites, Tasmania0 Comments

billy button gewurztraminer

Billy Button Drumborg Gewurztraminer 2018

21 January 2019

“In 2008 at Seppelt,” Jo Marsh says, “I came across a ’78 Drumborg Gewurz. It was amazing. The vines were supposed to have been pulled out but they never were; instead the vines were just slashed. So we cleared the bush block, replanted some, retrellised the original surviving vines. Then, finally, in 2011 we got […]

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Posted in Alpine Valleys, other whites0 Comments

shy susan pinot noir

Shy Susan Shiraz 2015

21 January 2019

Shiraz from the Tamar Valley. 16 year old vines. Fermented (wild) and partially matured in amphora, including 120+ days on skins, before being basket pressed into a used 500 litre puncheon. Bottled unfixed and unfiltered. “Were getting riesling acidity in shiraz; it’s picked in May; alcohol depends on vintage but the acid remains the same.” Glenn […]

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Posted in shiraz et al, Tasmania0 Comments

gundog hilltops no 2 shiraz

Gundog Estate Hilltops No.1 Shiraz 2017

18 January 2019

Shiraz grown on the Freeman vineyard in the Hilltops region of NSW.

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Posted in Hilltops, shiraz et al0 Comments

gundog hilltops no 2 shiraz

Gundog Estate Hilltops No.2 Shiraz 2017

18 January 2019

The 2015 version was made with shiraz grapes grown at the Freeman Vineyard but we’ve switched over to the Moppity vineyard for this 2017. All French oak, 30% new.  

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Posted in Hilltops, shiraz et al0 Comments

gundog estate marksman shiraz

Gundog Estate Marksman’s Shiraz 2017

18 January 2019

Shiraz from the Canberra District. This is the “limited release” or “best fruit” label.

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Posted in Canberra District, shiraz et al0 Comments


S.C. Pannell Arido Rosé 2018

18 January 2019

Mataro, Grenache, Touriga, and best drunk on the isle of Tortuga.

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Posted in McLaren Vale, Rose0 Comments

angove family crest shiraz

Angove Family Winemakers Family Crest Shiraz 2017

18 January 2019

McLaren Vale shiraz at an attractive price.

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Posted in McLaren Vale, shiraz et al0 Comments


Punt Road Chardonnay 2018

18 January 2019

Very surprised to see the last Punt Road Chardonnay we reviewed was vintage 2013. Anyway, this is hot of the press, so to speak.

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Posted in chardonnay, Yarra Valley1 Comment

angove family crest cabernet

Angove Family Winemakers Family Crest Cabernet Sauvignon 2017

18 January 2019

Angove put out some ripping wines it has to be said.

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Posted in cabernet et al, McLaren Vale0 Comments


Stefano Lubiana Pinot Gris 2018

18 January 2019

Surely one of the best Pinot Gris in the country? I’d have Brian, Hoddles Creek and a few others in that list too. Texture, texture, texture.

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Posted in pinot gris/grigio, Tasmania, Tip Top Tipple5 Comments

voyager estate girt by sea cabernet

Voyager Estate Girt By Sea Cabernet Merlot 2017

17 January 2019

Suspect we’re a little pre-release here but a) forewarned and b) we’re behind on the Girt by Sea front. It’s a blend of cabernet and merlot, obviously, but there’s also some petit verdot in the mix. All French oak nowadays.

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Posted in cabernet et al, Margaret River4 Comments


Lark Hill Gruner Veltliner 2018

16 January 2019

Gruner, biodynamically grown, from the Canberra District.

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Posted in biodynamic, Canberra District, other whites0 Comments


Lark Hill Riesling 2018

16 January 2019

Riesling from the Lark Hill Vineyard in the Canberra District. Certified biodynamic..

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Posted in biodynamic, Canberra District, riesling0 Comments

Pike & Joyce Nebbiolo Innesti 2017

16 January 2019

100% nebbiolo from Lenswood in the Adelaide Hills.

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Posted in Adelaide Hills, nebbiolo0 Comments


d’Arenberg The Coppermine Road Cabernet Sauvignon 2016

16 January 2019

Basket pressed, racked to new and used French oak, bottled unfined and unfiltered.

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Posted in cabernet et al, McLaren Vale3 Comments

Country Road Private Bin Cabernet Sauvignon 2014

16 January 2019

Joint venture between John Baruzzi and Chinese importer Wine Supply Pty Ltd. Made with McLaren Vale cabernet sauvignon, though the label doesn’t mention any region other than ‘South Australia’.

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Posted in cabernet et al, McLaren Vale, South Australia7 Comments

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The WINEFRONT has flourished as a wine review and information site since 2002. We believe in hard work, realistic scoring, reliability and rigorous independence. We cover Australian wine principally but we extend coverage across the wider world of wine. The hunt for the next beautiful wine knows no boundaries. The WINEFRONT is run by Campbell Mattinson, Gary Walsh and Mike Bennie. A full history of reviews and articles is available to subscribers via the WINE SEARCH tab.



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