Huon Hooke is one of the most senior and respected wine critics in Australia, having reviewed and written about wine in such publications as the Sydney Morning Herald, Gourmet Traveller Wine, and Decanter. Along with other well-known experienced wine judges he runs The Real Review, an independent, subscription-only resource for wine consumers, and wine producers across Australia and New Zealand submit their wines for assessment by these panels. If you hadn’t seen it on with my Vino Intrepido website, or on social media, Huon and the team were pretty happy with a number of my 2019 Italian-varietal wines, particularly the Mornington Peninsula Fiano, and the Heathcote Sangiovese. He selected the latter to be included in an online live tasting of Australian examples of Italian varieties, and I couldn’t be happier with what he said. I encourage you to watch, it was an enlightening exploration into the immense potential these cultivars have across the country.
Category Archives: Videos
Based in the Hilltops region of New South Wales, Freeman Vineyards has been on my radar for some time, mostly because they are working with Italian varieties that you don’t see very much planted in Australia. When they reached out with the offer of some samples I was thrilled, and I really appreciated the opportunity. Let me know what you think in the comments below!
Freeman Rosso 2017 – RRP $20.00
Freeman Robusta 2013 – RRP $70.00
Opawa are a range of wines made by Nautilus Estate in the Marlborough region of New Zealand. Meaning ‘Smoky River’ in Maori, the ‘Opawa’ vineyard is 25 hectares planted on stony soil, ripening earlier and producing an ‘intensely fruity and fragrant style of wine’, blended with fruit purchased from other vineyards. On this edition of Let’s Taste I am tasting the entire range currently available, let me know your thoughts in the comments below!
Opawa Sauvignon Blanc 2018 – RRP $23.00
Opawa Pinot Gris 2017 – RRP $24.00
Opawa Rosé 2017 – RRP $24.00
Opawa Pinot Noir 2017 – RRP $27.00
Website – https://www.opawawine.com
On my wine podcast The Vincast I recently interviewed chief winemaker for Brand’s Laira, Peter Weinberg (https://intrepidwino.com/2018/12/20/the-vincast-episode-141-peter-weinberg-from-brands-laira/). Peter spoke a bit about the history of this Coonawarra producer, and something interesting about one of the founders Eric Brand, was that after acquiring the Laira property in 1950 he worked for 16 years as a ‘Blocker’, the Coonawarra name for a grower who sold their fruit and didn’t make wine. This range of wines is named after this period, and I was interested to see how Peter expressed the two most important varieties for the region, let me know what you think in the comments below.
Brand’s Laira ‘Blockers’ Shiraz 2014 – RRP $25.00
Brand’s Laira ‘Blockers’ Cabernet Sauvignon 2015 – RRP $25.00
I truly love visiting my wholesale customers in Geelong and try to do so as often as I can. They are some of the most welcoming and open-minded wine people I meet, and they have been incredible supporters of my own Vino Intrepido brand. One of my favourites is Union Street Wine in the middle of town, a fantastic wine store and bar that always has new and exciting things to try. I love that Lewis and Andy make some of their own wine as well, and was thrilled to have a chance to taste another wine from their By Bodega range, I’m keen to hear what your thoughts are in the comments below!
By Bodega Geelong Shiraz 2017 – RRP $35.00
Not only have I interviewed Eliza and Angela Brown from All Saints Estate for my podcast The Vincast (https://intrepidwino.com/2017/02/07/the-vincast-episode-115-eliza-angela-brown-from-all-saints-estate/) but I’ve also tasted a few wines submitted by them on previous editions of Let’s Taste. The ‘Bloss’ is a brand new wine released from them recently, so I was thrilled to try something completely new from them! Let me know what you think in the comments below!
All Saints Estate ‘Bloss’ 2018 – RRP $26.00
Website – https://www.allsaintswine.com.au
Nine months after opening the 2017 vintage of the Yalumba ‘The Y Series’ white and rosé wines, I’m looking at the 2018 vintages. For me this is some of the best value on the market as far as Australian wine goes, and as always it is a privilege to be able to share my impressions. Similar to the 2017 wines there are some that stand out over the others, let me know what you think in the comments below!
Yalumba ‘The Y Series’ Riesling 2018 – RRP $15.00
Yalumba ‘The Y Series’ Sauvignon Blanc 2018 – RRP $15.00
Yalumba ‘The Y Series’ Pinot Grigio 2018 – RRP $15.00
Yalumba ‘The Y Series’ Viognier 2018 – RRP $15.00
Yalumba ‘The Y Series’ Chardonnay 2018 – RRP $15.00
Yalumba ‘The Y Series’ Sangiovese Rosé 2018 – RRP $15.00
The Morris Winery in the Northern Victorian region of Rutherglen has a significant amount of history, and was an important contributor to the success of Australian wines in the past, particularly in the context of fortified wines. These incredible gems take serious skill and patience to come together, and are woefully unappreciated by wine consumers these days. I was privileged to have an opportunity to taste the Classic Topaque when Casella Family Brands sent me a sample, let me know what your thoughts are in the comments below.
Morris Classic Liqueur Topaque NV – RRP $25.00 (375ml)
The final in a series looking at new releases from Heartland Wines based in the Langhorne Creek region of South Australia. Ben Glaetzer has been crafting exceptional wines at various price points for many years, and these new ‘Directors Cut’ wines are no exception. Let me know what you think in the comments below.
Heartland ‘Director’s Cut’ Shiraz 2015 – LUC $33.00
Heartland ‘Director’s Cut’ Cabernet Sauvignon 2015 – LUC $33.00
Website – https://heartlandwines.com.au
I’m always grateful to receive samples from Heartland Wines from the #LanghorneCreek region, as much as I appreciate the opportunity to look at alternative varieties and interesting blends. The #ForeignCorrespondent 2018 encompasses all three of these things, being a blend of Dolcetto and Lagrein, two varieties you are highly unlikely to see together in Italy being that they are from different regions. Here are my impressions of this wine, let me know what your thoughts are, or if you’ve seen these varieties together before!
Heartland ‘Foreign Correspondent’ Dolcetto Lagrein 2018 – RRP $25.00