Variety: Alicante Bouchet
Region: Barossa Valley
Good evening wine lovers! I may have just found the wine that all you red wine drinkers can drink during summer. If you’re like me, you prefer red wines over the white variety. This wine right here is something that you should seriously investigate if you want something that is easy drinking, and something you can drink all year round. I commented on the Facebook page late last week, that this was a wine that I was thoroughly interested in. The Borossa is a region that is very traditional, and to produce a wine like this is something that the Barossa Wine community don’t look openly upon. Well to that I say; “kudos Rockford Wines.” The “Frugal Farmer” is a wine that we should all jump onto and welcome with open arms.
Not much is known about Alicante in Australia. This is a wine variety that is well known in the likes of Spain and Portugal. However, Rockford Wines have been producing excellent Alicante, with their traditional Alicante Bouchet with no skin contact (which is one of the best summer time drinking wines by-the-way,) and then this, their “Frugal Farmer”, which is pressed leaving the juice. Then adding skin contact from other varieties. Alicante is one of the very few grape varieties that actually produces a wine juice that is coloured. Skin contact is what gives wine its colour. This wine caught my attention by being given its colour from mixing the skins from the Alicante, Grenache and Mourvèdre in the fermenting process. The result is as follows.
On the nose and its typical Alicante aromas. Nothing complex just simple blends of sweet and savory working in harmony. Therefore, you will find the likes of pepper, cherry, raspberry and smokey wood. Like someone has decided to smoke some BBQ spare ribs next to you while you decided to eat a plate of red cherries while sniffing at the pepper shaker. This is one of the few wines where picking the aroma in the glass is simple. Think red fruits mixed with winter wood and BBQ and you get what this wine is all about like a pro.
On the Palate and is is all so soft in the mouth. Gentle, low to medium bodied, with such a simple “drinkability” about it. You will find that the spice of the wine does the talking and the fruit actually sits in the background for once. (Things are reversed, and this is unlike anything that you would associate with something that comes out of the Barossa.) The secondary flavours you find in Barossa wines step up and take the lead, leaving the main “fruit” characters to sit there and allow the show to be lifted from their presence alone. The wine is spicy more than fruity, and you might start to find herbaceous quality on the palate, I found black pepper and bay leaves, even a bit of a wet forest vibe and the likes of semi earthy and fungi qualities to the wine. However, this is just kept in check with the undertone of cherry that just sits there like a mentor in the shadows keeping a watchful eye, not letting things getting out of control.
I found this wine very easy drinking and hence the title; “A Reason to Drink Red Wine in Summer”. This wine fits every description to what makes an easy drinking wine. Low alcohol content, and no real complexity or aging potential; but great balance and flavour. However, when it comes to rating this wine, it can not be given a high rating, because it does not fulfill all the categories to class it as a well rounded wine. So thus, the rating of this wine is not a symbol to just how good this wine actually is.
I suggest drinking this wine with a nice wood-oven pizza or some pork belly.
Rating: 88/100 (This is not a true indication to how good this wine is, for those who do not read the body of the review.)
Drinking: Now to 2018
The SA Wine Guy