Saturday 31 December 2016

Goaty Hill 2016 Riesling

There are two Tasmanian rieslings that usually stand out from the rest when matched with food; the Moores Hill Riesling and the Goaty Hill Riesling; sourced from vineyards just a few kilometres apart in the Tamar Valley. When I was a member of the judging panels for the Taste of Tasmania and Festivale, one of these two would invariably win the category. I am no longer a judge at either festival but the pair of them just keep notching up wins. One or the other. The 2016 from Goaty Hill is as good as ever; bright and shiny like a flashy new sports car with lemon/lime and grapefruit notes, effervescent floral characters and brisk, assertive acid. Pair this with oysters, crayfish or plain old flathead and chips and you have a winning combination. Outstanding. 94/100. $30.

Tuesday 27 December 2016

Emilia 2015 Pinot Noir

On the bright and juicy side of the pinot spectrum with plenty of oomph, this has a lot to commend it. Emilia is a five-hectare family vineyard at Spreyton on the central north coast of Tasmania planted six years ago by Marcus and Gail Burns, who have spent a portion of their lives in Emilia-Romagna in Italy, hence the name of their farm. Fortunately, they realised that Tasmania is not suitable for Italian grape varieties and went with pinot noir, chardonnay and pinot gris. The vines are still young but they have talented consultants in Fran Austin and Shane Holloway. I liked this a lot - and clearly there is a lot of potential ahead. $38.

Saturday 17 December 2016

Delamere Vineyards 2015 Chardonnay

A wine for sipping and savouring rather than quaffing, this is a very classy and beautifully balanced chardonnay crafted by Shane Holloway and Fran Austin at Pipers River winery Delamere. It's made in a classic cool-climate style with wild ferment, partial malo and 10 months of lees stirring in Burgundian oak barrels adding complexity and interest without deflecting away from the purity and intensity of the fruit. Think citrus notes, hints of white peach, some smoky oak and bright acid, all delightfully poised and coming in at just 13% alcohol. Match with roast pork and crackling; or cheesy pasta dishes. $50.

Wednesday 7 December 2016

Bream Creek 2016 Pinot Rosé

The wines of Bream Creek have been enjoying a lot of success on the show circuit recently, thanks in large part to the attention paid by owner Fred Peacock to vineyard excellence. This delicious savoury rosé was rushed to market as the 2015 vintage had been sold out for several months. The fruit for this comes from one of the oldest vineyards in Tasmania, tucked away on the south-east coast. This is a super wine for summer enjoyment with lucious strawberries and cream notes, a dry finish and bright refreshing acid. Pair it with a Lebanese mezze platter. $28.

Friday 2 December 2016

Sinapius 2015 Home Vineyard Chardonnay

Yet another excellent wine from the talented team at Sinapius, at Pipers River, who keep turning out wines of quality and personality. I prefer this chardonnay, made using fruit from the winery block, to its sibling made from Tamar Valley fruit - although it is a close call. This is 100% estate grown from 20+ year-old vines, and newer close-planted stocks, and utilisies no fewer than eight different clones. The fruit was hand-picked, whole-bunch pressed, fermented using wild yeast and underwent lees stirring and full malo, along with 10 months in French oak, one- third new. Enticing floral aromas lead on to a pure, intensely-focused palate with citrus and stone fruit notes and delightful acidity. It's drinking brilliantly right now and would be brilliant with Asian-spiced pork belly. $50.