These are some of the odd hits and misses from the ozwinereview tasting bench this month, all coupled together in a collection of tidbits.
Tscharke The Master Montepulciano 2012 (Marananga, Barossa Valley, Barossa, SA) 14%, $25
More about Marananga than it is Montepulciano, with a chocolate red fruit looks almost Grenachey, though finishes drier and more savoury back end. It’s certainly brightly coloured with a pretty redcurrant nose, vanilla bean oak sweetness on nose and palate, along with jellybean fruit and sandy, oak tipped tannins. Once that oak settles in this should be pretty handy, though it looks just a bit simple and lacks some real length. Pleasant though. 16.5/20, 88/100+
Hither & Yon Tannat Grenache 2012 (McLaren Vale, SA) 15.5% $30
Reductive, red cherry and slightly confected fruit on the nose – red and black cherry cordial. Sweet red fruit on the palate, finishing with nice grippy tannins but just lacks the penetration to really convince. That lollied red fruit gives a great initial hot though ultimately pulls up quite short and suggests too much ripeness and a lack of structure. 16.5/20, 88/100
Oakvale Ablington Vineyard Semillon 2014 (Hunter Valley, NSW) 10.5%, $30
An odd wine this one. Neutral, lemon and melon nose with a real sweaty edge. Still really very tight. Zippy, green apple palate has chalky acidity and medium intensity. Lots of promise here, though not particularly well defined and the lees ageing has given this a real roundness. Solid mid tier wine, but going to need a while to settle down. 17.5/20, 91/100
Golden yellow colour. Retains the trademark buttermilk/Golden Gaytime and white peach 10X style, if perhaps a little fuller and more candied than usual. Indeed the palate is warmer, the palate leaning towards hay and white peach with a spirity finish. Not quite the elegance through the finish this year, just a little warm. Lovely nose but perhaps a little warming and indistinct to finish. 17/20, 90/100
Tower Estate Reserve Hunter Valley Shiraz 2011 (Hunter Valley, NSW) 13%, $45
A big lift of purple blackberry fruit, tilled earth and bitter acidity, it’s tight, dry and lightly tannic, a little gruff but wonderously powerful. Just a little acid stunted but will be very long lived. Good. 17.8/20, 92/100+
Vasse Felix Heytesbury Chardonnay 2013 (Margaret River, WA) 13.5%
Definitely more solidsy wild funk this year, still backed by the grapefruit intensity and briny, crystalline acid. Surprising acid given the alcohol really, the finish punctuated by leesy fullness. Perhaps a little too dry, but the shape is ultra fresh and clear. Long. I’d like it perhaps to be a little softer, but that should come with time. Good stuff. 18.5/20, 94/100
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