I’m sitting down to write this post after a particularly good, and particularly spontaneous weekend. A spontaneous drink and then meal on Friday night, a spontaneous home-made pizza dinner-party on the front lawn on Saturday (accompanied by 2010 Raveneau, 01 Le Chambertin and a heap of other great wine), and a spontaneous ‘do nothing’ day on Sunday to compensate…
This entry is about the recent ‘young gun of wine’ tasting that I attended in Melbourne (and not the 2002 Gomez album ‘In Our Gun’ – sorry if you’d expected a different angle…). The Young Gun of Wine (YGOW from here on in) is an annual award held to celebrate some rising stars in the industry; and favours small volume, high quality producers – hence is right up LTLT’s alley! Furthermore, the YGOW finalists always seem to be a friendly bunch, which gives me even more motivation to support them and their produce .I’ll be focussing this on the ‘public’ award, which is handed to the winemaker that sells the most bottles at the annual public tasting. It’s a great day out, and ensures that the winner is crowned by those who vote with their feet – not just armchair critics.
So it’s only appropriate that I’m sitting in an armchair to write this post…! Here are a few highlights, starting with the winner:
Abel Gibson – Ruggabellus – Winning both the ‘judged’ and public YGOW for 2012 and attractor of some serious heat from the wine press, Abel Gibson is turning out some modern and interesting Barossa wines that are a million miles from the porty, jammy wines that were so prevalent through the late 90s and mid 2000s. Both his wines on show were rhone blends of Grenache, Shiraz and Mataro/Mouvedre. I found his 2010 Timaeus (Grenache dominant) to be a lovely example of barossa richness, but his 2010 Efferus (Mouvedre dominant) to be the standout with incredible vibrancy and a freshness that is so often lost in hot climates.
Shane Halloway – Delamere Vineyard – Since taking over in 2007, Delamere Vineyard (in the Piper’s Brook area of Tasmania) was been turning out some pretty top notch pinot (their 07 is so good that when I drink what’s left in my collection I fell bittersweet – the wine is amazing but I know I’ll never get to try it again!). Shane’s 2010 Delamere Pinot does not disappoint, a harmonious wine with an array of red fruits and spice sitting in great balance. His 07 Blanc de Blancs has a slightly funky, nectarine-dominant nose at first but leads to a rich and juicy palate that leaves me wanting more than just a taste!
Syd Bradford – Thick as Thieves – A producer that I hadn’t come across before, Syd produces a gentle Yarra Valley pinot but the real star was his incredible 2012 Yarra Valley Sylvaner (Sylvaner is a white grape found mostly in Germany and Alsace in France) – a complex, waxy, perfumed wine that shows notes of pineapple and citrus and would go a treat with some chilli pork dumplings.
Taras Ochota – Ochota Barrels – My absolute standout favourite producer for the event, both wines on show were delicious, and not to mention the best named wines at the event. The 2012 Weird Berries in the Woods Gewurtz is an assured and powerful wine that has that distinctive Gewurtz perfume but with a great minerality and some nice sweet fruit. Complex and Enticing. The 2011 Fugazi Vineyard Grenache shows pepper and black spice up front before blooming into a palate of rich, dark fruit and raspberry aromatics. Incredibly fresh and flavoursome. Great Great wine.
Well that’s it. No post next week because I’ll be doing the Xmas break thing with the family. I may squeeze another post out before the end of the year as no doubt there will be a lot of great boozing to come over the next fortnight. In the meantime,