Tag Archives: Europe

The Vincast Episode 119 – Greg Lambrecht from Coravin

Greg Lambrecht discovered an interest in wine while growing up in California, but his passion for discovery began when he studied in Boston and met the woman who would become his wife. Through family and friends he was able to taste and learn while he developed an incredible career in medical technology. During his wife’s pregnancy he wanted to enjoy a glass of wine but it seemed a waste to open a bottle as she wasn’t drinking. Thus he conceived of a device that could allow someone to drink from a bottle without opening it, and the Coravin is now changing the wine industry around the world.

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Greg Lambrecht

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The Vincast Episode 101 – Sierra Reed Milne from Reed Wines

Growing up in Southern California presented an incredible opportunity to Sierra Reed Milne when she was scouted for a modelling career at a young age, which in turn gave her the chance to travel and experience other cultures. After gaining a following on the 18th season of Survivor, she dreamed of becoming a television travel program host, but couldn’t have imagined that it would be realised in New Zealand. It was here that she began her wine journey after working closely with the Family of Twelve, a journey that has led to her marrying an Australian, and making her own wine based in Victoria. Check out my Let’s Taste video of one of her wines here!

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Sierra Reed Milne from Reed Wines

Sierra Reed Milne from Reed Wines

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The Vincast Episode 075 – David LeMire MW from Shaw + Smith & La Linea

David LeMire started his career in wine similar to how I did; working in a wine shop while studying at university. He gained experience working for Oddbins in the UK, and whilst there he was introduced to the Master of Wine via his studies of the WSET. Upon returning to Australia, he spent ten years working for Negociants in sales and exports, and during this period became a Master of Wine. Since 2010 he was worked with Australia’s first MW (Michael Hill-Smith) at Shaw + Smith in the Adelaide Hills. He also has been involved with his own wine project La Linea, and the wine bar Mothervine in Adelaide.

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David LeMire MW

David LeMire MW

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The Vincast Episode 062 – Julian Castagna from Castagna Vineyard

Before entering the wine industry, Julian had a successful and diverse career in the film and advertising industries, until he desired a more peaceful life on a vineyard. He scoured Australia for his slice of heaven but “kept coming back to Beechworth” in Victoria, eventually establishing Castagna Vineyard at 500m on granite soils. Due to his fascination with and affinity to biodynamic European wines, he became the first official biodynamic vintner in Australia, and an ambassador for biodynamic agriculture in the country, organising such fantastic events as the Return to Terroir tastings.

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Julian Castagna (image courtesy The Wine Idealist)

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The Vincast Episode 045 – Randall Pollard from Heart & Soil

Randall Pollard is a name in Victoria synonymous with independent fine-wine sales, having worked in the industry for almost 20 years before opening his own wine store in Geelong (Randall’s), and then importing a range of outstanding artisan wines from France and Europe (Heart & Soil). His love of wine stems from sneaking glasses of wine from the cask at the age of 15, enjoying it with cheese and bread. He shared more stories from his career on this episode of The Vincast.

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Randall Pollard from Heart & Soil Wines

Randall Pollard from Heart & Soil Wines

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Bibendum Degustacion de Vinos – 3/06/2013

Bibendum as I have said many times, are one of the best importers of wine in Australia. For the first time they hosted a tasting of their entire range of Spanish producers, and some were gracious enough to fly all the way to Australia for the event. Here is a very long list of wines I tasted.

Colet-Navazos Cava Extra Brut 2009
Nice gun flint volcanic notes. Clean pure fresh light, classic but fairly simple and safe.

Navazos I Think Manzanilla
Slightly rich and creamy, toasty and crunchy texture.

Argueso Manzanilla
Pure fresh light, clean and brisk, friendly and appealing.

Argueso Las Medallas Manzanilla
A bit deeper and richer, bolder but still nice and salty, sweeter fruit character.

San Leon Manzanilla
Zingy zesty, so fresh, not what you think of manzanilla.

Angel Rodriguez Martinsancho Verdejo 2011
Fig skin and herb notes. Exquisitely balanced, light but not thin.

Val de Sil Montenovo Blanco 2012
Mid-palate texture saltiness. Bright fruit-driven but savoury.

Val de Sil Godello 2011
Quiet. Bright and fresh, fruit-forward, nice and textural.

Val de Sil Pezas da Portella Godello 2010
Salty volcanic oily nose. Much more elegant and restrained.

Horacio Calvente Pago La Guindalera Blanco 2010
Classic but restrained and dry, fresh musky floral elements.

Mengoba Brezo Blanco 2011
Tight and sharp, very precise, really good but not offering a lot.

Mengoba Blanco Godello Y Dona Blanco Sobre Lias 2010
Nicely developed, slightly wilder and more mineral.

Mengoba Brezo Tinto 2011
Bright juicy floral notes, fresh and juicy but tight and straight.

Mengoba Flor de Brezo 2010
Tighter spicier and leaner, much more savoury.

Mengoba Mencia de Espanillo 2009
Intense tight concentrated, juicy and fairly soft but intense.

Mengoba Mencia de Espanillo 2010
Amazing precision and integration, LENGTH.

Mengoba Estaladina 2010
A little dirtier and wilder, dark and intense.

Domino do Bibei Lapola Blanco 2010
Tight juicy round full friendly.

Domino do Bibei Lapena Blanco 2010
Wilder funkier basalt, intense super godello up to 11.

Domino do Bibei Lalama 2009
Soft juicy full, tight.

Domino do Bibei Lacima 2008
Wild but a little short, lacking something.

Adega Algueira Brandon Blanco 2012
Herbal green fig, very fresh and food friendly.

Adega Algueira Cortezada 2011
Denser and more lifted aromatically, brisk concentrated quince like, high acids.

Adega Algueira Merenzao 2010
Spicy wild earthy, generous yet tight.

Adega AlgueiraCarravel Barrica Mencia 2009
Denser tight, softer and fuller.

Adega Algueira Pizarra 2010
Not seeing it, might need more time.

Quinta Da Muradella Caino Redondo 2009
Too funky and wild, tougher more traditional and rustic.

Quinta Da Muradella Souson 2009
Closed and developed, tight focused acid great.

Exopto Horizonte Blanco 2011
Juicy fruit (musk) sweet, quite different, more Loire style.

Exopto Bozeto de Exopto 2011
Soft bright juicy clean, pleasant character, exceptional value.

Exopto Horizonte de Exopto 2010
Tighter more integrated, much more traditional.

Exopto de Exopto 2009
Deep and soft, juicy reflection of the variety.

Felix Callejo Rosado Vina Pilar 2012
Juicy fresh red fruit sweet.

Felix Callejo Flores de Callejo 2010
Bold juicy dark and intense, fairly straight-forward.

Felix Callejo Crianza 2009
Denser earthier and fuller, quite vintage specific.

Felix Callejo Majuelos de Callejo 2009
Tighter grainier and earthier, very generous.

Felix Callejo Gran Callejo 2006
Intense tight precise and still closed.

Felix Callejo Finca Valdelroble 2008
Stinky reduction, bright wild salty.

Felix Callejo Finca Valdelroble 2009
Juicy hot still very fresh.

Condado de Haza 2009
Very intense dark almost molasses, very soft easy and generous.

El Vinculo Crianza 2006
Extremely traditional, burnt aromatics.

Pesquera Tinto Crianza 2009
Wild earthy savoury, soft concentrated, REAL.

Pesquera Tinto Crianza 2010
Rounder larger fuller, not too different in fact.

Pesquera Reserva 2008
Wild earthy savoury, unbelievably tight.

Dehesa La Granja Tempranillo 2005
Soft bright and generous.

Bodegas Carchello 2011
Quite spicy and approachable.

Terroir Al Limit Torroja Vi de Vila 2011
Light fresh pure lean and clean.

Terroir Al Limit L’Arbossar 2010
Tighter, denser more generous.

Terroir Al Limit Dits del Terra 2010
So elegant but hauntingly complex.

Terroir Al Limit Les Manyes 2010
Beautifully floral yet spicy, intense and tight, extremely long.

Terroir Al Limit Les Tosses 2010
Darker more brooding and more fruit sweetness.

Clos Manyettes Priorat 2007
Punchy and unctuous.

Clos Mogador 2007
Toasty smoky earthy wild terroir wine.

Equipo Navazos No. 31 La Bota de Amontillado
Toasty caramel nose, rich but still dry, wild and feral.

Equipo Navazos No. 37 La Bota de Amontillado
Creamier honeyed spice caramel, salty richer rollier.

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Eurocentric Tasting – 9/07/2013

Neville Yates imports wines from Europe, South Africa and New Zealand under his Eurocentric banner. I was first introduced to him when I was the wine buyer for King & Godfree, tasting a few of the wines with him. On my journey I visited some German wineries and caught up with several more at Prowein, leading me to surmise that he has one of the best collection of German producers in Australia. His range is eclectic at times with more than a few ‘natural’ producers that come up with some interesting examples. He was showing some of the new arrivals at Pei Modern in Melbourne.

Francesco Scanavino Diamant Blanc 2008
Very classic metodo classico nose. Generous fruit, fairly simple and clean on the front, hint if creamy texture.

Lancelot-Pienne Blanc de Blancs
Fairly developed open autolysis notes, very yeasty bready. Nice oxidative citrus.

Champagne Geoffroy Expression Brut
Cleaner tighter yeast notes. Rounder more earthy savoury dark berry notes, heavier on the pinot noir?

Champagne Secret Rosé
Open generous ripe red fruit nose, but tight fine and crisp savoury texture on the palate.

Champagne Chartogne-Taillet Rosé Brut
Fine pure but very complex cheesy charcuterie nose. Bold full expressive combination of red citrus and subtle savoury meats.

Benoit Ente Bourgogne Aligoté 2009
Oak dominant chardonnay style. Soft gentle vanilla creamy texture, some white peach.

Gautheron Chablis 2011
Sharp fig kiwi skin, overly leesy. Flat and dull.

Domaine Oudin Chablis 2009
Rich creamy buttery chardonnay openness. Overworked flabby lacking focus and crispness.

Domaine Arnaud Tessier Meursault Casse-Tetes 2010
Nice developed stone fruit and oak maturity integrated. Bold and generous but not heavy or hot, fairly rich and creamy from malo, but elegant and complex.

Arnaud Ente 2008 Meursault
Much more exuberant and flintier, more citrus than stone. Fuller smokier toaster, better malo integration, dense.

Dombeya Stellenbosch Chardonnay 2011
Big whack of ripe creamy juicy pineapple. Fairly soft subtle but showing that sweet vanilla pineapple crumble character.

Domaine Montvac Mélodine Vacqueyras 2011
Spicy quince apricot kernel. Open light round spice fruit friendliness.

Willi Schaefer Graacher Trocken 2011
Clean pure lime sherbet. Crisp very light pure and excellent for the price.

Schloss Lieser Dry 2011
More intense mineralic ripe deep fruit notes. More intensity and character, fuller fresher.

Emrich-Schönleber Monziger Halenberg Trocken 2011
Slightly earthy red soil minerality, subtle orange sherbet. Bold texture, generosity and density of fruit and acid.

Rebholz Kastanienbusch GG 2011
Open savoury earthy natural wild style. Subtle subdued broad. Singular.

Pierre Frick Riesling 2010
Candied oxidised pear banana caramel. Nondescript middling Alsace wine.

Grunhauser Bruderberg 2011
Intense quince floral kumquat notes. Density of viscosity and sugar, nice bite of acidic quince notes.

Emrich-Schönleber Lenz 2010
On the stripped side, de-acidified? Flat on the finish.

Forstmeister Geltz Zilliken Riesling 2009
Nice density and ripeness. Great depth and character, dry sweet well-balanced.

William Schaefer Graacher Domprobst Kabinett 2011
Spicy savoury mineral complexity, nice lively fruit profile, round and yet brisk.

Fritz Haag Brauneberger Kabinett 2011
Very quiet subtle nose, but delivering plenty on the palate, wonderful length and focus, but plenty of personality.

Rebholz Birkweiler Kastanienbusch Spätlese 2011
Wild green pepper spice fig. Generosity yet exquisitely balanced sweetness. Loving this producer.

Schäfer Frölich Halenberg Spätlese 2009
Nice talcy flinty lifted citrus floral minerality. Bold full viscous sweetness, but just a hint of complex savouriness.

Schäfer-Fröhlich Halenberg Spätlese 2005
Nice generous soft rich ripe but not heavy. Still plenty of life but looking simple currently.

Dombeya Sauvignon Blanc Stellenbosch 2012
Tight green under-ripe.

Ataraxia Sauvignon Blanc South Africa 2012
Big tropical passion fruit. Delivers exactly what people want and is very good to boot.

Sebastian Riffault Akmèniné Sancerre 2008 (naturel)
Smells like pure honey. But still dry. Interesting, not sure it’s great though. Hipster wine?

Intellego Chenin Blanc 2011 Swartland
Interesting texturally. Different in terms of fruit to Vouvray etc.

Domaine de la Tournelle Trousseau des Corvées 2011
Clean sharp precise but good personality. Most certainly a food wine.

Roland Pignard Beaujolais Villages 2010
Strawberry spice. Very lovely.

Jean-Marc Burgaud Morgon Les Charmes 2011
Lean spicy under-ripe.

Pierre Thillardon Chenas Les Boccards 2010
Mean and lean, sharp.

Emile Ballard Le Grand Chemin 2008
Nice soft berry notes. Still on the sharp acidic side, a little aldehydic.

Scanavino Barbera d’Asti 2011
Tight brisk, great balance of dark fruits and spicy mulberry.

Domaine Des Espiers Cotes Du Rhone 2011
Bright fresh sufficiently savoury spicy but light and friendly with a touch of length.

Domaine Des Espiers Gigondas 2010
Earthy savoury spice, base of dark fruits underneath. Round soft yet fresh savoury red berries.

Domaine Faury Syrah 2011
Quite spicy and peppery. On the boring side…

Domaine Faury Saint Joseph 2009
A tad too much sweet oak.

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Trembath & Taylor New Arrivals Tasting – 19/06/2013

Toscolo Vernaccia 2012
Lovely bright floral notes. Tight crisp a little green but fresh acids.

Marcarini Roero Arneis 2012
Bold full of fruit and juby, but still crisp fresh and light, with some nice carry on the palate.

Pieropan Soave 2012
Precise mineralic pure focused and very crisp. Light clean yet not without personality.

Villa Matilde Fiano di Avellino 2011
Beautiful shellfish expressive fruits. Pure and tight yet intense, a touch warm and generous but linear.

A.Mano Rosato 2012
Very floral rosy pomegranate musk. A little too light and without body and character.

Giovanna Tantini Bardolino 2011
Bright intense juicy plum and hints of clove. Soft mellow yet fresh and friendly. Sweet core of fruit lingers.

Hauner Salina Rosso 2011
Quite shy and subtle. Very savoury textural but enough flesh to fill the mouth and soften. Tough to assess without food.

Damiano Ciolli Silene Olevano Romano Cesanese 2011
A touch different, quite rustic stinky. Surprisingly dense and full, quite tannic and bold in dark fruit. Almost aggressive on the front.

Collemassari Rigoleto Montecucco 2011
Bold earthy rustic slightly oaky notes. Not as heavy and full as you’d expect, expressive but still light and fresh.

Poderi Colla Nebbiolo D’Alba 2010
Super tight and intense, will take a whole to open up.

Contorno Fantino Barbera D’Alba Vignota 2011
Earthy generous atypical of the variety. A little simple, product of the vintage.

Carnasciale Toscana IGT 2010
Spicy and peppery of all things. Broad generous and forward but earthy red fruits.

Pieropan Amarone 2009
Spicy and dark plum fruits. Bold intense builds in the palate, good whack on the back palate. Classic vintage expression.

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Euan McKay New Arrivals tasting – 19/06/2013

J. Lassalle Brut Rosé Premier Cru
Bold brisk textured generous but balanced focused and fresh. Nice delicate berry components.

Domaine Thomas Sancerre 2011
Bright fruity musky nose. Clean pure fresh safe sancerre.

Billaud-Simon Chablis 2011
Very shy flinty brisk citrus, subdued. A bit dirty but certainly has personality. Worth looking at a different vintage.

Michelot White Burgundy 2009
Classic aromatics, fresh clean and slightly fruit sweet, focused and persistent. Nice savoury texture.

Max Ferdinand Richter Wehlener Sonnenuhr Kabinett 2009
Open and clean, classic example of the vintage.

Max Ferdinand Richter Auslese 2007
Tight clean fresh vibrant exquisitely balanced minerality and sweetness.

Thierry Violot-Guillemard Red Burgundy 2010
Nice clean precise cherry nose, delicate. Fresh balanced long and pleasant.

Tollot-Beaut & Fils Chorey-Les-Beaune 2010
Some earthy burnt elements, a touch dirty. Old-school style, very savoury and grainy textural, good acidity. Little fruit.

Domaine de l’Ameillaud Cairanne 2010
Spicy crushed clove. Hmmm tight and a touch volatile. Not really.

Domaine de la Mordoree Lirac 2009
Nice intense sweet dark plum notes, just a hint of spice. Full juicy building texture spice and acidity. Very fresh yet broad appeal. Warmish.

Domaine Raspail-Ay Gigondas 2010
Very tight intense acidity. Exceedingly fresh and linear.

Domaine Richards Muscat de Beaumes des Venise 2011
Wonderful.

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Red + White Imports – 21/05/2013

Bianca Vigna Prosecco DOC
Nice crisp clean citrus apple, classic prosecco. Fresh bold fruit and warm mouthfeel. Super pleasant.

Louis Roederer Brut Premier
Creamy buttery autolysis, a little fat and rich bit still fresh and clean. Minimal complexity, certainly vibrant.

Louis Roederer Rosé 2007
Crisp bright citrus red grapefruit blood orange. Long and precise. A little mushroomy pinot on the nose.

Louis Roederer Cristal 2005
Quite wild and complex, nutty mushroom leesy Camembert. Extraordinarily delicate, fine and elegant, long and ethereal creaminess. A cut above the 2004.

Peramor Verdejo Rueda 2011
Quite subtle aromatically, thin and watery. Not giving much at all.

Monte Tondo Soave Classico 2012
Disappointing, suffers same problem as Verdejo.

Louis Jadot Macon Village White 2011
Subtle to say the least, fresh and clean but lacking much personality.

Reichsgraf von Kesselstatt RK Riesling Trocken 2011
Slightly spicy quince notes, clean and fresh but good level of mineral green notes.

Reichsgraf von Kesselstatt Riesling Kaseler 2011
Showing a little more concentration, density but still clean precise and fairly straightforward.

Reichsgraf von Kesselstatt Riesling Wiltinger 2011
Bolder still, lifting but still an easy vintage.

Reichsgraf von Kesselstatt Josephshofer 2011
More RS texture and weight, great precision and length, some botrytis notes.

Reichsgraf von Kesselstatt Piesporter Goltropchen Riesling Spatlese 2011
Dense creamy lanolin texture, balanced yet rich and subtle sweetness.

El Bos Tinta de Toro 2011
Spicy Black Forest plum notes, bright fresh but a little fruit and oak sweet.

Monte Tondo Valpolicella 2011
Lavender potpourri, herbal lemon tea. A little tight and weedy, lacking depth and plumpness for the tannin structure.

Mazzei Badiola IGT 2011
Focused tight balanced fresh yet bold. Is what it says.

Vietti Barbera d’Asti Tre Vigne 2010
Spicy nutmeg, black cherry red plum. Bright fresh approachable but focused.

Vietti Barbera d’Alba Vigna Scarrone 2010
Tighter leaner on the nose, density and focus. Fuller yet softer, more and longer tannins.

Louis Jadot Cote de Nuits Villages Le Vaucrain 2009
Safe. A tad hot. Serviceable.

Louis Jadot Chambolle-Musigny 2009
More depth and precision, more character and intensity. Delivers.

Pure Garrigue Cotes-du-Rhone Red 2011
Dense dark red fruits, very limited amounts of spice.

Domaine de la Renjarde Massif d’Uchaux 2010
Soft dense yet fresh and focused.

Chateau La Nerthe Chateauneuf-du-Pape 2009
Totally against the grain for the appellation and vintage. Light fresh and vibrant rather than full soft and dark.

Chateau de Pez 2008
Serviceable but uninteresting.

Mazzei Mix 36 2008
Very international oak maceration nose. Very tight and focused but not full heavy or overworked. Focused fine yet intense tannins. Needs a lot more time for oak to blow off.

Red + White Imports

Red + White Imports

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