Friday, 21 October 2016

Tasmanian Organic Wines 2015 Pinot Noir

Made in tiny quantities (the vineyard is only 1-hectare), this pinot noir never fails to impress. Ian and Caryl Cairns thumb their noses at the elements by growing top-class pinot using organic and biodynamic methods on the eastern foothills of the Cluan Tier overlooking the Liffey Valley outside Deloraine in north-western Tasmania. The massive diurnal variation in the region makes for intensely flavoured wines, which are hand-picked and made with minimal sulphur, and this is a crackingly good example, unashamedly varietal, tight, taut and terrific with great balance and immediately approachability. Delicious and well worth seeking out. $36. Ring (03) 6397 3470 for retail outlets.

Saturday, 15 October 2016

No Clothes - No So2 2016 Pinot Noir

Joe Holyman is a colourful, fun-loving character, whose high-quality wines reflect both his sense of humour (take a look at the label on this bottle, which appears to feature either Joe or wine writer Mike Bennie naked) and his serious winemaking side. This is a charmingly rustic new release; made without the addition of any sulphur, which is used as a preservative in most wines. It takes "minimal intervention" to the brink as it was also bottled without being fined or filtered. If you enjoy wines made in the style of Beaujolais or Passetoutrgains you'll love this unpretentious little number. It is fresh and immediately approachable; like the vinous equivalent of a bowl of fresh strawberries and cream with truffles on top. It is texturally pleasing, too. Put a bottle of this in the fridge for an hour or so and enjoy chilled on a warm summer day. $32.

Saturday, 8 October 2016

Sinapius 2016 Clem Blanc

Vaughn Dell and Linda Morice are a talented and innovative young couple who make some of Tasmania's most exciting wines under the Sinapius label, utilising fruit from their own close-planted vines at Pipers River and also using grapes sourced from the Tamar Valley. This is the second release of their white field blend from their own estate, a melange of 50% riesling, 30% gruner veltliner and 15% pinot gris, along with small portions of pinot blanc and gewurztraminer. Now bottled in Alsace-style bottles, this is thoroughly interesting wine with textural elements alongside bright fruit and crisp acid from young vines.The hand-picked fruit was whole-bunch pressed with a percentage of the fruit left on skins for 48 hours. The five varieties were co-fermented with using indigenous yeasts matured in old 500-litre puncheons, and kept on lees for five months. The end result is captivating; think apple, pear, citrus, stone fruit and spice notes, white pepper and kaffir limes, plenty of texture and crispness on the finish. Think Alsatian freshness rather than oiliness. With fewer than 400 cases made, speed might be of the essence. $38.