Le Tastevin - September 14, 2016 - 2012 Australian Wines (Hosts: Bordeaux Joe)
Tonight's tasting is meant to test what these relatively inexpensive Australian wines can show from a great vintage, at least from South Australia. From the Halliday website (accessed Sep 2016), the vintage was described thus: "I cannot remember a vintage having received such hyperbolic praise right across the board, covering all regions and all varieties, as there is for 2012. Words that came up repeatedly were ‘fantastic’, ‘outstanding’, ‘sensational’, ‘best in my lifetime’, ‘perfect in every way’, ‘density of colour’, and ‘development of flavour at moderate alcohol levels’, and one winemaker, who couldn’t wait to give it a numeric rating for next year, gave it 11/10. The only sour note is the low yields, seldom less than 20% below average, and for some half of the average." (Note: three wines were not drinkable upon opening: Penfolds Bin 8, Jim Barry "Lodge Hill", and Mitolo "Jester").
Mollydooker "Girl on the Go"
Sparkling wine made from 2014 vintage Verdelho, 2/3 is fermented in stainless steel containers, the other 1/3 in barrels and aged in oak (2/3 American, 1/3 French)
Blend of 75% Shiraz and 25% Grenache from the Ebenezer sub-region of Barossa Valley (like the "Anaperenna" and "Amon-Ra" below), the ungrafted vines are 80-110 years old in sand-clay-loam soil over limestone. Grapes are fermented and aged in hogsheads made of 80% French and 20% American oak for 24-36 months.
Shiraz sourced from vineyards in the McLaren Vale and Langhorne Creek regions, the grapes are fermented in oak barrels and matured in 100% American (69% new, 31% 1-year old) oak. This wine packs a punch at 16% ABV.
Two Hands "Bella's Garden"
WS - 95, No. 3 of Top Wines of 2012. Two Hands is a negociant operation run by Michael Twelftree, and this label is a Shiraz sourced from multiple vineyards in Barossa Valley and aged in 100% French hogsheads.
Penfolds Bin 407
A Cabernet Sauvignon effort, the grapes are pressed and partially barrel-fermented before spending 14 months in 22% French (100% new) and 68% American (19% new, 16% 1yo, 43% seasoned) oak hogsheads
John Duvall Wines "Entity"
Shiraz grapes sourced from several locations, grapes are fermented in stainless steel containers and then aged in first in 1/3 french oak hogsheads, then finished in 2-4 year old 300 liter hogsheads for 16 months
Penfolds Bin 389
The "poor man's Grange" first created by Max Schubert. A blend of Cabernet Sauvignon and Shiraz, the grapes, like the venerable Grange, are sourced by Peter Gago's team from multiple vineyards in multiple regions. Aged in 100% American oak hogsheads (300 L, 20-30% new oak) for 18 months
Blended 82% Shiraz and 18% Cabernet Sauvignon, from vines 30-130 years old, these are fermented in open 1-2 ton fermenters, hand plunged, with a small portion fermented in oak containers. Aged in 100% new oak (92% French, 8% American) hogsheads for 16 months
Shiraz from the Ebenezer sub-region of the Barossa Valley, vines are 50-130 years old, grapes harvested are aged in 100% new oak (95% French, 5% American) for 14 months
R.L. Buller & Sons NV Fine Tawny
Images of some of the wines sampled.
Page last edited: November 19, 2016 (EB)