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An extraordinary Wynns Coonawarra cabernet tasting

This was a wonderful tasting of a selection of Wynns Black Label and John Riddoch Coonawarra cabernet sauvignon wines from the 1960s, 1970s, 1980s and 1990s, with some quite interesting conclusions.   Those conclusions were that the Black Label, for most vintages, served blind and side-by-side with the John Riddoch, provided the more compelling current…Continue readingAn extraordinary Wynns Coonawarra cabernet tasting

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Wine Reviews

Institute of Masters of Wine Bordeaux 2014 in bottle Sydney tasting

Last weekend, the annual Institute of Masters of Wine Bordeaux tasting in bottle of the 2014 vintage took place in Sydney. I expected this to be a much more popular event than the previous year’s tasting of the 2013s (you can read my reviews of that tasting here) which was a poor vintage. But in…Continue readingInstitute of Masters of Wine Bordeaux 2014 in bottle Sydney tasting

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Rutherglen fortified muscat; from bottom to top

Here’s the second of my promised posts on the Rutherglen wine region.  The first post was on  Rutherglen’s renaissance and can be found here.  This post is all about what Rutherglen is famous for: fortified muscat (grape: muscat à petits grains) and fortified topaque (grape: muscadelle). Viticulture and winemaking Rather than recite facts from the…Continue readingRutherglen fortified muscat; from bottom to top

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Paris to Chablis

Jetlag recovered, the first stop on the wine itinerary was Chablis.  I suspect due to pre-conceptions of cold winters and frost, I had always thought of Chablis as being a little north of Paris, notwithstanding I know France reasonably well.  In fact, it is a roughly 2 hour drive south-east of Paris, which made me…Continue readingParis to Chablis

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Merlot in Australia: maligned or misunderstood? Or, Sir, can you spare a clone?

Introduction Given the quality ambitions of many Australian producers, the relative underperformance of merlot in Australia has always struck me as something of an anomaly that is worthy of further thought and attention.  So what is wrong then with Australian merlot? Like all good stories, we have an alleged culprit. Locally the finger generally has…Continue readingMerlot in Australia: maligned or misunderstood? Or, Sir, can you spare a clone?