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Granite Belt Regional Report 2017 Poll: The best Australian wine region to Pierro Chardonnay Hatherleigh Pinot Noir McLaren Vale Regional Report Churton: Vineyard as a garden of Eden Birds of a feather: Rudi Bauer and his Quartz Reef Greywacke Wild Sauvignon Blanc 2009-2014 Riesling Rendezvous 2016 Do preservative free wines age? UPDATE: WET changes have wine producers hopping mad #2 Terroir Unlimited: Terroir Al Limit 2016 Mount Pleasant 1965 Vines Rosehill Vineyard Shiraz 2014 Balnaves The Tally : Vertical Tasting 1998-2013
 
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Granite Belt Regional Report 2017

Mike Bennie headed to Queensland’s Granite Belt to put the region’s wines under the microscope. Misconceptions be damned: the result was as full of surprises as it was incredibly good wines.  

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Poll: The best Australian wine region to “tour” is?

Simple question: what’s the best Australian wine region to tour? Maximum of 3 answers allowed, though you can click on one only if your choice is overwhelmingly in one direction.

pierro chardonnay vineyard w kangaroo

Pierro Chardonnay – a ten year collection from 2006 to 2015

From seemingly nowhere, a ten year collection of Pierro chardonnay arrived at my front door. Thrilled. Blue chip stuff.  

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Hatherleigh Pinot Noir – Full Retrospective Tasting

Established in 1996 with most plantings going on in 1999, this is Nick Bulleid MW’s labour of love, all planted to pinot noir.

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McLaren Vale Regional Report

The Winefront’s Mike Bennie and Gary Walsh visited McLaren Vale in June to assess exactly where the region’s wines are at. The result was a thorough health check of the region with more than a few surprises. Indeed, the odd shock was in store.

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Churton: Vineyard as a garden of Eden

You get the feeling Sam Weaver is tired of the nincompoops.

Rudi Bauer by Alli Albanese

Birds of a feather: Rudi Bauer and his Quartz Reef

Sometimes the luck runs against you.

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Greywacke Wild Sauvignon Blanc 2009-2014

A precious afternoon one on one with the bloody great Kevin Judd.

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Riesling Rendezvous 2016 – general riesling tastings

Riesling Rendezvous 2016 held in Seattle is over and done with, a large scale event that drew riesling winemakers, lovers, wine writers, MS, MW, CMS, you name it, like riesling, they were there, from all over the riesling planet.

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Do preservative free wines age?

Accepted wisdom is that ‘preservative free’ or (very) low sulphur wines must be consumed within a year or at most two from bottling.

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UPDATE: WET changes have wine producers hopping mad #2

Opposition to the proposed changes to the Wine Equalisation Tax (WET) is mounting.

terroir al limit

Terroir Unlimited: Terroir Al Limit 2016

Next level wines. I can think of few Spanish producers making wines of such excitement, charisma and transparent-feeling representation of place.    

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Mount Pleasant 1965 Vines Rosehill Vineyard Shiraz 2014

The Mount Pleasant winery is my special subject. It was the home of Australia’s first great winemaker – Maurice O’Shea – and until the early 1960s it was known as the producer of Australia’s best table wines.

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Balnaves The Tally : Vertical Tasting 1998-2013

“When I first started making wine in Coonawarra,” Balnaves long-term winemaker Pete Bissell says, “we always thought the warmer vintages were the better vintages. Now I’m starting to think the cooler vintages are better.”

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Chateau Tire Pé Tiré Vin Vite Bordeaux Rouge 2015

25 April 2017

 No added SO2. Organic viticulture. Importer: The Other Bordeaux

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Posted in Bordeaux, merlot et al0 Comments

Sposa

Heartland Sposa e Sposa 2014

25 April 2017

A blend of Lagrein and Dolcetto, with winemaker Ben Glaetzer at the helm. Importantly too, $1 from each bottle is donated to Australian Marriage Equality (the formal organisation). “In Langhorne Creek we believe in the freedom of grapes to choose their own relationship”, runs the parallels.  

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Posted in Langhorne Creek, other reds0 Comments

Turkey Flat Mataro

Turkey Flat Mataro 2016

25 April 2017

This is fun to drink and great to see Turkey Flat showing a young, fresh red from the variety and their vine sources. Mataro can be so joyous yet serious at the same time.

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Posted in Barossa Valley, mourvedre et al0 Comments

Yelland and Papps Second Take SHiraz

Yelland & Papps Second Take Shiraz 2016

25 April 2017

Around 65% whole bunch jumps into the naturally ferment. Matures in barrel for nine months or so. Quite an expressive approach at Barossa shiraz, and delightful for that. This range from Yelland & Papps is full of surprises.

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Eastern Peake Walsh Block Syrah

Eastern Peake Walsh Block Syrah 2013

25 April 2017

From ‘next door’ (over the fence) from the Eastern Peake Ballarat estate vineyard. A smidge of whole bunch in the natural ferment, then hangs out in concrete tanks, then in wood for 12 months. Bottle aged then released. A seriously good producer mostly flying under the radar here. Hang the (good!) score, this might just […]

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Posted in Ballarat, shiraz et al, Tip Top Tipple0 Comments

Hand Crafted Shiraz

Hand Crafted by Geoff Hardy Shiraz 2015

25 April 2017

This ‘Hand Crafted by Geoff Hardy’ range traipses around South Australian wine regions, usually showcasing alt-varieties outside of the ‘noble’. Here’s their shiraz from McLaren Vale.

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Posted in McLaren Vale, shiraz et al0 Comments

Pindarie Western Ridge Shiraz

Pindarie Western Ridge Shiraz 2015

25 April 2017

A loyal following Pindarie has. Generosity in the wines, unashamed ripeness and flesh in reds, a comfort in warmth and snuggly tannins. Here’s a wine that should titillate the fan base.

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Posted in Barossa Valley, shiraz et al0 Comments

Bent Creek Vineyards Black Dog Shiraz

Bent Creek Vineyards Black Dog Shiraz 2015

25 April 2017

The gist here is that the wine showed like a ‘big black dog’ so don’t be thinking it’s something to do with mental health, even though that’s where my mind went to straight away. It’s a curious name, therefore. Anyway.

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Posted in McLaren Vale, shiraz et al, Top Value0 Comments

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Usher Tinkler Wines Reserve Shiraz 2015

25 April 2017

A reserve shiraz from 2015 seems ambitious from the Hunter Valley, but this is the wine as it stands. Has some savouriness and slender tannins to anchor you into the variety from the region well. Great to see Usher Tinkler striking out on his solo project with ambition.

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Posted in Hunter Valley, shiraz et al0 Comments

Sarnin Berrux Gamay

Sarnin-Berrux Gamay 2014

25 April 2017

Sarnin-Berrux, called the largest organic co-op in Burgundy, make two gamay wines, but as I understand, this is one from Burgundy, rather than Beaujolais, where they make the other one from. It comes in light, bright, fresh, vibrant, built for immediate consumption. No additions, minimal intervention winemaking in their shed. I really like the feel […]

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Posted in Burgundy, organic, other reds0 Comments

Pittnauer St Laurent Dorflagen

Pittnauer Dorflagen St Laurent 2015

25 April 2017

Light, fresh rendition of the Austrian variety St Laurent from various vineyard sites under the organic care of brilliant producer Pittnauer. That these natural-vibing wines come under screwcap is extra good news. St Laurent makes for thirst-crushing red wines when brought to life at low alcohol and with minimal oak influence, as here.

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Posted in Austria, other reds, Top Value0 Comments

Mitchell McNicol Shiraz 2006

Mitchell McNicol Shiraz 2007

25 April 2017

Released as a mature wine. So few do this these days, so kudos to Mitchell for the wherewithal.

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Posted in Clare Valley, shiraz et al0 Comments

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Chalk Hill Grenache Tempranillo 2015

24 April 2017

50% Grenache (planted 1960), 36% Tempranillo and14% Graciano (both planted 2007). Increasingly, I lean towards the view that Grenache and friends are better suited to McLaren Vale than is Shiraz. Of course, there’s some outstanding Shiraz produced around the Seaview dress circle (Coriole, Kay’s etc), and other fine sites such as Marius in Willunga etc. etc. […]

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Posted in grenache et al, McLaren Vale2 Comments

corioleshiz

Coriole Estate Shiraz 2015

24 April 2017

A couple of weeks ago now, I did a vertical tasting of Coriole Shiraz from 1990-2015 inclusive (aside 2008 being MIA). I’ll write that up shortly, but meanwhile, one of the bookends to keep you going (tasted as at now, not as part of the vertical).

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Posted in McLaren Vale, shiraz et al2 Comments

chalkhillshz

Chalk Hill Shiraz 2015

24 April 2017

A blend of three vineyards.

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Posted in McLaren Vale, shiraz et al0 Comments

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Yann Chave Crozes-Hermitage 2015

24 April 2017

Synthetic cork a strange choice, though, that being said, there’s no problem enjoying this wine ‘in the now’. No new oak as I understand, and I think mainly stainless steel.  Importer: Beaune & Beyond.

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Posted in Rhone Valley, shiraz et al0 Comments

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Nick Spencer Chardonnay 2016

24 April 2017

Debut Chardonnay for Nick Spencer Wines.

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Posted in chardonnay, Tip Top Tipple, Tumbarumba6 Comments

BEN_SCHILD Reserve Shiraz

Schild Estate Ben Schild Reserve Shiraz 2014

24 April 2017

French, American and Hungarian oak shape this wine. This comes from a single plot of a significant vineyard for Schild Estate. Brooding wine.

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Posted in Barossa Valley, shiraz et al0 Comments

schiabrog

Schiavenza Barolo Broglio 2012

24 April 2017

Broglio is a cru (or MGA) in Serralunga, though my mind leaps to ‘imbroglio’, which I’m more often likely to visit.  Importer: Nebbia Wines

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Posted in Italy, nebbiolo9 Comments

Usher Tinkler Nose To Tail

Usher Tinkler Wines Nose to Tail White 2016

24 April 2017

It’s a treasure map to find the vintage (2016, tucked away amongst the feathers of a chicken on the label), and the variety mix is semillon and chardonnay. The new look Usher Tinkler wines rolls on.

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Posted in chardonnay, Hunter Valley, semillon et al0 Comments

What is The Wine Front?

The WINEFRONT started in 2002 and has long been Australia's most active wine review site. It is entirely independent. Its focus is Australian wine but the coverage is open slather across the full wonderful gamut of world wine. It's run by Campbell Mattinson, Gary Walsh and Mike Bennie. A full history of reviews and articles can be accessed via the WINE SEARCH tab.
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