Tag Archives: Grampians

Best’s – 29/08/2013

Established in 1866, the Best’s Great Western estate in the Grampians region is seriously old, even for Europe. They have some of the oldest plantings in the country, including such varieties as shiraz, cabernet sauvignon and even pinot meunier. The Thompson family have owned the winery and vineyards since 1913 and they recently celebrated their 100th year of ownership. They also celebrated the current custodian Viv’s 52nd vintage. They have once many accolades including the illustrious Jimmy Watson Trophy, and their top shiraz wines are some of the most collected in Australia. I had the opportunity to taste some of their new releases, and here are my notes.

Riesling 2013
Lovely crisp zesty sherbet orange blossom. Nice depth and body, not heaps of texture, just enough viscosity to add an extra element. Lovely clean fruit.

E.V.T. 51 Riesling
Richer denser earthier and more concentrated. More weight and viscosity from higher residual sugar. Generous fruit, stone more than citrus.

Dolcetto 2011
Very light in colour, subtle aromatics, ripe fresh dark berries. Light fresh easy drinking, pleasant table wine but a touch thin in the mid palate.

Old Vine Pinot Meunier 2011
Extremely savoury meaty earthy ripe Indian spice. Silky elegant but consistent with the aromatics. A singular wine without parallel.

Bin 1 Shiraz 2012
Dark cassis very subtle, ruby red fruits. Excellent balance, well contained, slightly maderised fruit, on the fresh yet jammy side.

Bin 0 Shiraz 2010
Settled down, exceptionally long, a little retired for now, will develop exceptionally. Great wine from a great vintage.

Cabernet Sauvignon 2012
Very dark and lacking focus, a little too juby and fruity. A touch dirty and burnt, but not too heavy or hot. Pleasant but fairly varietal in nature.

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Jamsheed – 13/05/2013

Roussanne Beechworth 2012
Lovely floral quince brightness. Bold textural sweet depth. Very concentrated and generous.

Riesling Great Western 2012
Dense concentrated rich round, not your average riesling.

Healesville Syrah 2011
Lovely smoky ochre toasty. Wild spicy meaty character.

Garden Gully Syrah 2011
Insanely dark deep and intense, interesting celery character on the back.

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Everything new is old again (Yarra Valley, Victoria – 3/05/2013)

Having worked in the Yarra Valley you would think that I knew the region pretty well. Well think again! For one thing it’s not that easy to get out and see a lot of other stuff whilst working, particularly when you don’t even live in the region. For another thing, the Yarra Valley is probably one of Australia’s largest regions geographically, but at the same is disparate and quite sparsely planted. There are many areas that I am still yet to explore outside of the valley floor. The other thing is that the Yarra Valley is possibly one of Australia’s most dynamic regions for wine, constantly reinventing itself with new wineries and winemakers almost every year. For me the exciting thing about this is that it is also one of Australia’s oldest regions, and was the first to gain international recognition back in the 19th century. It was re-established in the 1970s after almost 100 years of ignominy and since then has continued to evolve and develop while maintaining its boutique image. My quest for the day was to visit producers who have only had their own brand for ten years or less but are turning heads for their style and expression that is challenging preconceptions both of the Yarra Valley and Australian wine.

The best view in the valley

The best view in the valley

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Jamsheed – 3/05/2013

2013 Mansfield Riesling
Nice bright crisp bright.

2013 Great Western Riesling
More subdued and less brightness of aromatics. Full focused broad and textured.

2013 Beechworth Roussanne 1
Buttercup sunflower texture brightness.

2013 Beechworth Roussanne 2
Rich bold bursting with fruit.

2012 Beechworth Roussanne 3
Exceptional purity.

2013 Cabernet Franc Carbonic Maceration whole berry vs. whole bunch
Whole berry prettier. Whole bunch more interesting.

2013 Beechworth Shiraz de-stemmed on skins
Bright intense passion fruit skin sharpness. Lovely food wine.

2013 Beechworth Shiraz 80% whole
Denser and more concentrated. Deeper fuller and power. Retaining elegance but needing to settle down.

Yarra Syrah 2012
Raw wild pepper,

Great Western Syrah 2012
Super ballsy intense.

Jamsheed Syrah

Jamsheed Syrah

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