After exploring many different and interesting wines, the time seems right to dial back the exoticism and find something closer to home.
But while this wine may have been grown and made in Australia, it certainly takes its cues from the Old World. As the saying goes:
Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.
- Clarity: Clear
- Intensity: Pale
- Colour: Lemon
- Condition: Clean
- Intensity: Medium
- Development: Youthful
- Sweetness: Dry
- Acidity: High
- Tannin: N/A
- Alcohol: Medium
- Body: Medium
- Flavor Intensity: Medium
- Finish: Medium
- Quality: Very Good
- Readiness/Cellaring: Can drink now, potential to cellar
- Identity: Australia / Central Victoria / Marsanne, Roussanne, Viognier
- Price: High-priced ($28)
- Long, thick tears with bright, vibrant rim
- Aromas of lemon curd, oak, oxidised peach, yoghurt
- Flavours of honey, lemon curd, yoghurt, lime candy, citrus zest
- Mouthwatering, palate-cleansing acidity
- Slight waxiness texture on palate gives sense of minerality or bittterness
- Possible indication of extended skin contact
- Personally, an excellent wine that stands apart from single varietal examples
- Similar in style to wooded Chardonnays
- Match with chicken dishes or charcuterie
— Mark Law (@RationalWine) February 5, 2015
In the first photograph you might notice that there is an extraneous sticker partially obscuring the main label. The reason is because this wine was once submitted to the Sydney Royal Wine Show for judging, and the stickers are a method of organising all of the various wines sent in for judging.
Producers are encouraged to submit more than one bottle of the same wine to insure against wine faults, damage during transit, and other factors, so some of these extra bottles end up as reserve stock.
Happily, these wines do not remain in storage indefinitely
As thanks for donating our time to help the wine show, volunteers receive a gift of wine. I should mention that this is not the norm for wine shows everywhere, and I would discourage you from volunteering purely for the chance to receive “free” wine – often you will not get to choose what wines you will receive, otherwise everyone would demand to have the most expensive and famous labels available.
Myself, I do it for the pleasure of meeting like-minded people, and to have the chance to see some of the most interesting wines being made today. In many ways, it is like a wine tasting, only that the tasting is done by other people. It’s good practice for whenever you may find yourself having to pour 20-50 glasses of wine at a time, and you soon learn to be very conservative with your servings, exercising moderation to stretch each bottle as far as you can.
But enough about wine shows, let’s talk about this wine. While this may have been produced close to home, the varietals used hail from Old World France, particularly in the Rhône Valley. While the same thing could be said of Syrah/Shiraz, Australian winemakers have well and truly made the varietal their own, whereas Marsanne, Roussanne and Viognier barely register on the peripherals of the casual wine enthusiast.
This might be because we have been led to think that single-varietal wines are somehow superior to multi-varietal blends. Words like “purity” and “varietal character” are thrown around casually, but when you consider that some of the most coveted wines in the world are also blends this argument falls apart.
From a previous article:
There is another interesting explanation behind the cultivation of multiple varietals in Bordeaux – no vintage is predictable, and vineyards are at the mercy of the elements, particularly rainfall. By diversifying their selection of varietals, which flower and ripen at different times, it’s hope that if one varietal under-performs, the others will be able to pick up the slack, and by blending multiple varietals year after year they can create a consistent quality of wine.
So we must remind ourselves that there are sound reasons for blending multiple varietals, and that blended wines are not just a hodge-podge of random juices.
Other than that, the wine really speaks for itself, and when broken down in a rational manner as in the notes above, we see that it is just as complex and delicious as any single-varietal you could imagine, but merely expressed in a different way.
Read more: A Rational Perspective Of Terroir