At the table today I tasted through six new release Australian whites, all completely blind. No price exceeded $22, although that was not known either. The average quality was very good and as usual blind tasting leads to a few surprises. Interestingly, the two wines with gold medal stickers on them (the first and third) showed well in the bracket. Notes and observations follow.
d’Arenberg The Olive Grove Chardonnay McLaren Vale Adelaide Hills 2016
This wine has restrained aromas of lemon and stones. Dry on the palate, there’s some well handled oak, green apple characters, balance, medium length and some acid zing. A bargain at $15. Rating: Good to Very Good. Abv: 13.4%. Price: $15. Source: Sample.
Heggies Vineyard Eden Valley Chardonnay 2016
This wine presents with very restrained aromas of stone and meal, and cedar characters suggesting mostly older oak has been used. The palate is dry and restrained in its expressions of lemon and stone, and medium length and also has some acid zing. Rating: Acceptable to Good. Abv: 13.0%. Price: $22. Source: Sample.
Taylors Clare Valley Padthaway Chardonnay 2015
Restrained in impression, this wine opens to aromas of green apple and subtle oak use. Between medium and full bodied on the palate, with good length and a very balanced expression of a cooler climate style chardonnay. Another bargain, this time at $19. Rating: Good to Very Good. Abv: 13.5%. Price: $19. Source: Sample.
d’Arenberg The Money Spider Roussanne McLaren Vale 2017
This is a more aromatic wine than the previous three, with its expression of apricot and dried fruits. No oak on the palate, it is full bodied with a mealy, textured expression and is well made if singular. Rating: Good. Abv: 12.9%. Price: $20. Source: Sample.
d’Arenberg The Broken Fishplate Sauvignon Blanc Adelaide Hills 2017
This is most evidently sauvignon blanc. Pale in colour, there are pronounced aromatics of gooseberry and very grassy notes. No oak is used, there’s fresh acid on the palate, and 4g/l of residual sugar softens the impression. Mid range length. Rating: Good. Abv: 12.5%. Price: $20. Source: Sample.
Angullong Pinot Grigio Orange Region 2017
Pale in colour with a slight pink hue. Typical pinot gris. A medium intensity aromas of pears on the nose. The palate is between medium and full bodied with no oak influence and a stoney, minerally expression of citrus fruits and pear and an acid zing on the tail. A good example of cool climate pinot grigio. Rating: Good. Abv: 13.0%. Price: $20. Source: Sample.