Each of the past few vintages this Clover Hill has looked a little more serious, a little more definitive and a little more age-worthy. Nature hasn't always helped, but the winemaking is unquestioned, supported by a level of detail and care not typically given to under $50 sparkling wines. Think ageing on oak foudres, 3 years on lees and lowish dosage. Serious winemaking...
It smells serious too. Very correct and dry with latent power. It looks a bit lean actually, a wine that needs more time to show its best. Palate too is dry and just a little withdrawn, the Chardonnay more dominant but without the trademark white flower prettiness you'd expect. Too dry and dense? Needs 2 years to show its best and promises much. Very smart.
Score: 17.5/20 91/100+
Would I buy it? I'd go the slightly more expensive blanc de blancs but this is still classy stuff.
When I was 18 I started working in a small suburban bottleshop, largely to buy cheap beer. It was my first year of university, doing a degree that I didn't really like, and a liquor shop seemed like fun. Needless to say I discovered wine, my uni degree morphed into something completely different and wine/beer took over my life.
More than fifteen years later and I currently spend my days wearing many (wine) hats, mostly as a writer, presenter and marketer.
While wearing my writer hat I contribute to the likes of LattéLife; The Retiree; Gourmet Traveller WINE and National Liquor News plus I'm a Lifestyle FOOD channel wine expert.
Crowned the 2009/10 WCA Wine Journalism 'Young Gun', in my spare time I'm a wine judge and finishing my final subject of a Masters in Wine Technology & Viticulture.
This site (Australian Wine Review or ozwinereview for short) is dedicated to talking about wine, beer and other good things. Largely focused on Australian wine, but with a healthy dose of tasty vino from NZ, France, Italy, Spain.. oh hell, if it's good, I'm in.