Balgownie Estate’s 2015 cabernet sauvignon from Bendigo is earthy, leafy and ready to drink. It has light tannins for this firm grape variety. Closer to a Médoc in style, but with riper fruit being from Bendigo, this wine provides enjoyable drinking now. Its modest structure means that this wine is best consumed over the next few years. Rating: Good. Abv: 13.6%. Price: $45. Website: https://www.balgownieestate.com.au. Reviewed: February 2020.
This is a good quality Valdobbiadene Prosecco from Bellenda. It has aromas of apple, lemon and earth. The palate is dry with a creamy mousse. A step up from generic Prosecco. Rating: Good. Abv: 11.5%. Website: https://www.bellenda.it/wines/. Reviewed: January 2020.
From Castle Rock Estate and Porongurup in Western Australia, this is a fine, chiselled, emphatically dry riesling in style. In the glass, there is a firm aroma of lemon and stones. The palate has fresh, biting acidity and a mineral edge. Ready to drink now, this should improve with 4 to 5 years in the cellar. Rating: Good. Abv: 11.5%. Price: $25. Website: https://castlerockestate.com.au. Source: Sample. Reviewed: January 2020.
This is a sound cru bourgeois from Château Barreyres. It opens to quite an intense herbal aroma before settling to an earthy expression of red and black fruits. The palate is restrained and balanced with dry tannins. Approachable now, this wine will benefit from a further 2 or 3 years in the cellar. Rating: Good. Abv: 13%. Website: http://www.chateau-barreyres.com. Reviewed: January 2020.
This is a very good Eden Valley riesling from Rockford. It has typical lemon-line aromas and some nascent hints of toast. The palate has steely acidity, medium fruit weight and a ripe expression. This lovely wine will cellar for a decade. Rating: Good to Very Good. Abv: 12.5%. Price: $20s. Website: http://www.rockfordwines.com.au. Reviewed: January 2020.
This is quite a youthful and restrained Chianti Classico from Castellare di Castellina and the 2017 vintage. It has aromas of redcurrants, red fruits and firm tannins. This wine will suit another 3-5 years in bottle before approaching it or a long decant. Rating: Good. Abv: 13.5%. Website: http://www.castellare.it. Reviewed: January 2020.
This is an excellent wine from Covert Farms in the Okanagan Valley in Canada. A blend of cabernet sauvignon, cabernet franc and petit verdot and from the 2016 vintage, its style is reminiscent of a left bank cru bourgeois Bordeaux from a ripe vintage. In the glass, there are earthy, blackcurrant aromatics. The palate has very fine tannin that builds with time. Approachable now, it will suit cellaring for 5 years or more. Rating: Very Good. Abv: 14.3%. Price: $45. Website: covertfarms.ca. Reviewed: January 2020.
Very pale in colour, this pinot noir from the Mornington Peninsula has aromatics of strawberries and red fruits. The palate is fresh with ripe red fruits and a restrained bearing. Ready to drink now, this is a youthful and approachable style of pinot noir. Rating: Good. Abv: NA. Price: $20s. Website: NA. Reviewed: December 2019.
This is a typically robust rendition of Mudgee shiraz. It opens to aromas of oak, vanilla and ripe black fruits. The palate is full bodied with soft and approachable black fruits that build tannin with time in the glass. Ready to drink now or it can be cellared for at least 5 years. Rating: Good to Very Good. Abv: 13.8%. Source: Sample. Reviewed: December 2019.
This is an excellent Valtellina wine from Nino Negri. It has swirling aromatics of florals and roses. The palate has a firm structure and high acidity. This nebbiolo is rather delicious and can be approached now or over the next decade. Rating: Very Good. Abv: NA. Price: mid $50s. Website: NA. Reviewed: January 2020.