ANDREW Margan of the Hunter Valley’s Margan Famil Winegrowers is not a believer in slavishly following market trends: he makes wines that he wants to drink, and from the way sales are going they’re obviously wines that plenty of others want to drink too.
And what’s particularly interestingly is that Andrew makes his wines only from vines grown on the red soils of Broke Fordwich, reasoning that these result in wines of greater richness and with more mid-palate than from fruit grown in nearby Pokolbin.
To get enough land for this exercise, Andrew has gradually pieced back together the old Broke Lindemans vineyards that had been broken up over the years, and last year also took over the adjoining Saxonvale Vineyard as well, giving him nearly 120ha (300 acres) of 40 year old vines on red soil.
One of the more interesting of his wines is a Barbera off vines from cuttings from the original Carlo Corino vineyard at Mudgee; the just-released 2005 has lovely aromas of herbs, berries and earthy characters that are reflected in the rich, ripe and juicy palate, which in turn is followed by typical long savoury tannins.
Being of Italian heritage – it’s grown extensively throughout the country’s Piedmont region – Barbera is a great food wine: match this one at $25 a bottle with pasta or herbed tomato sauce dishes.