Good evening once again wine lovers. There has been a little bit of a hiatus since my last post, but I am back once again. Tonight I won’t review just one wine, but six wines in one post. There is only one problem, I can’t tell you where these wines are from, the producer, or the cost. These six wines were part of a blind tasting for the Australian Wine Research Institute (AWRI). Each year I am invited to participate in a red wine trial, which they subject us to a random tasting of wines to gauge the consumer interest in the market. Although I get paid to try wine, the more rewarding thing is actually finding a wine which I would potentially buy. This is how I came to find the Yearling Cabernet Sauvignon from Rymill Wines. (Let’s say they made some money off of me on that particular wine.) Never-the-less, I should move on and tell you a little bit more about the six wines that I sampled over the course of the evening on the University campus.
If you are familiar with my review from last year, I predict the price, the variety and the region of each wine. Usually the AWRI stick to one variety for the evening, as in the past the results all have come back under one variety. Last year it was Cabernet Sauvignon. They also number the wines, and this is my reference point to what I have consumed. I won’t find out the wines until later on in the year; maybe by the end of August; but I use this as a barometer to what wines I should look out for. Especially if they are decently priced so I can acquire a few bottles!
Moving on, let’s look at the wines of this evening.
Region: McLaren Vale or Grampians.
Aroma: Blackcurrant and dark pepper. Pepper is a really strong theme of this wine.
Palate: Dry and earthy, black pepper flows through this wine. Could it possibly be a GSM? I don’t think they would lean this heavily on pepper on the palate if it was indeed a GSM. I think more a Shiraz, but the heavy influence of black pepper suggests that it could be a region other than McLaren Vale; although it is a characteristic famous to the region. Could even be something out of the Grampians.
Price: $10 to $20
Region: Adelaide Hills or Clare Valley.
Variety: Smells like a Pinot Noir, but the colour is too dark. I am leaning on Shiraz once again.
Aroma: Red Cherry, violets and clay. Quite a floral wine, and with a blindfold on, would definitely suggest Pinot Noir, but the colour suggests otherwise. Maybe even a Sangiovese… but I am trusting AWRI to stick to the one variety and I think this is a Shiraz with some age in the bottle. Perhaps a 2005 or 2006 Vintage.
Palate: Beautiful red cherry and soft tannin. The palate is almost bordering that Pinot Noir territory, though this wine is a bit denser on the palate for it to be a Pinot Noir. I really enjoy this wine and I don’t think it comes in cheap.
Price: $60 Plus. (I hope I am wrong; this is one wine I would like to have in my collection)
Region: Adelaide Hills or Yarra Valley.
Aroma: Plum, Chocolate, Mint, Pine vegetation and Aniseed.
Palate: Soft and rather silky red fruit, which runs with vanilla oak spice. This wine represents a cooler region for Shiraz, hence thinking along the line of the Hills and Yarra Valley in Victoria.
Region: Adelaide Hills
Aroma: Plum and blackberry with nuances of vanilla.
Palate: Rich red fruits which is quite chewy and lush, white pepper is an element in this wine which marries up with the generous fruit backing and brings around a wine with great length.
Region: Barossa Valley or Coonawarra
Variety: Shiraz or Shiraz/Cabernet Blend
Aroma: Smells like a Barossa Shiraz with the signature black plum and chocolate.
Palate: Rich dark fruit dance around and creates a full bodied wine with power and great flavour. Some Cabernet characters start to work their way in this wine too, which makes me think that it could be a blend, but then Coonawarra Shiraz’s can display Cabernet characteristics. There is aniseed spice… (Not a flavour on the palate common to Shiraz). Maybe this is a multi-region wine, and it could possibly be a Penfolds Bin 389.
Price 50-60 Dollars a bottle.
Region: Barossa Valley
Aroma: Screams out Barossa Valley, so I would be extremely surprised if it was anywhere else. Dark plum, chocolate and a generous helping of rich toasty oak burst through on this wine that smells big in the glass.
Palate: This pretty much confirms Barossa Rich dark fruit symbolises the warm climate. With chocolate and oak spice, this wine truly resembles the region. Nothing overly complex, but the densest wine I consumed for the evening.
Price: $25 to $35 dollars a bottle.
Thank you for joining me on my flight this evening. I look forward to finding out the results of this blind tasting. Once I have the results, I will post them alongside my guesses for you to have a look at. (And to see just how badly I have cocked it all up.) I will return soon with another wine review for you all in the very near future.
Happy drinking as always.
The SA Wine Guy