Red Wine Valli Gibbston Vineyard Pinot Noir 2019. Grant Taylor has a special affinity for Pinot Noir, having won the Best Pinot Noir Trophy at the International Wine Competition three times. Over the course of his career Taylor has helped many top New Zealand wineries create their very first vintage including Felton Road, Mt Difficulty, Bald Hills, Mount Edward, Carrick, and Hawkshead. Since 1998 Taylor has also been making wines at Valli Vineyards, one of the leading wineries in the Central Otago region. The Valli philosophy is focused on expressing the beauty of the terroir and the Pinot Noir grape by making single vineyard wines. Valli Gibbston is crafted from fruit from the Gibbston vineyard which is aromatic and fresh as well as some grapes from the Bendigo vineyard which add depth and structure. The fruit is picked by hand and fermented in 18 separate batches. The young wine is then matured in oak barrels for 11 months before bottling. Bright red cherry, dried herbs and hints of baked earth burst out of the glass while the first sip reveals a vibrant freshness, medium body and smooth texture. A great partner for charcuterie, duck or game dishes such as partridge or wood pigeon.
Red Wine Valli Gibbston Vineyard Pinot Noir 2019
Red Wine Vasco Sassetti Rosso di Montalcino 2019. The Sassetti family have been making wine in Montalcino since the 1900s. Today the estate is composed of 14 hectares of vineyards set on the town’s rolling hills on excellent quality soils which are rich in lime. The vineyards are planted with Sangiovese Grosso, the typical Montalcino clone of the Sangiovese variety which is used to make the region’s Brunello and Rosso wines. Rosso di Montalcino is regarded as the younger brother of Brunello, sharing many of this famous wine’s characteristics yet boasting a more modest price tag. The appellation was established in 1984 as part of a drive to protect the reputation of Brunello while providing an easy-drinking, more accessible alternative. The grapes used for Rosso di Montalcino must still be grown within the Brunello appellation, but they are only required to undergo six months of ageing in oak barrels followed by another six months ageing in the bottle before release. The flavour profile of this youthful Italian red is energetic and lively with plenty of red cherry, plum and dried herb notes along with a bright acidity, smooth tannins and medium body. The freshness makes it a great match for tomato-based pasta dishes, pizza, or a rack of lamb grilled with Mediterranean herbs.
Red Wine Vasse Felix Filius Cabernet Sauvignon 2019. Founded in 1967 by Dr Tom Cullity, Vasse Felix was the first winery to be established in Australia’s world-renowned Margaret River region. Cullity realised the exceptional potential of the region for premium winemaking thanks to the Mediterranean-style climate with proximity to both the Indian and Southern Oceans which have a powerful cooling effect. Today the estate has four prime vineyards spread across the region and is rightfully revered for its Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon wines. Their Filius Cabernet is crafted from estate fruit carefully selected from all of their vineyards with individual plots vinified separately. The winery uses wild yeasts found naturally in the winery for fermentation and the young wine is aged in French oak for 12 months before the individual components are blended together. Filius is made as a classic Cabernet with power and well-defined tannins which will help it to age gracefully in the cellar, but it also has the juicy fruit profile and smooth texture to enable it to be drunk while young. On the nose cassis, blueberry and coffee beans dominate while the palate reveals hints of dried herbs, nori and wild mushrooms as well as seductive crushed berry flavours which linger on the tongue.