Monday, 30 June 2008

WELL-MATCHING VARIETY TO REGION

Wc30Jun08


YOUR FREE WEEKLY WINE COLUMN for week beginning June 30 2008

wine with david ellis

SOUTH Australia's Kirrihill Wines has long trumpeted the ideal of matching only the most suitable varieties to the best regions in which they grow, and its new Single Vineyard Series from the Clare Valley testifies to the wisdom of this long-held variety-to-region philosophy.
The three wines in the series – a Bothar Umair Cabernet Sauvignon, Baile an Gharrai Shiraz and a Tulach Mor Shiraz – all come from the excellent 2006 vintage and take their unusual names from the Gaelic for their originating vineyards: Bothar Umair Vineyard (Tank Road) is on the now-Anglicised Tank Road, Ballingarry Vineyard translates to Baile an Gharrai, and Tullymore Vineyard to Tulach Mor, all in honour of Clare's original 1840s Irish settlers.

All three reflect the Valley's variety-to-region capabilities, and its ability to produce cool climate wines of both powerful structure and elegance. The Cabernet Sauvignon from the Olssen family's Bothar Umair Vineyard (a new source for Kirrihill) is a real stand-out with lovely sweet berry and plum fruit on the palate, while well-integrated oak is framed with elegant tannins.

Good value at $19.95 to savour with rare-cooked Beef Wellington drizzled with rich gravy and accompanied by winter root vegetables.

ONE FOR LUNCH: MILD summers with long warm days and cool evenings help makers in New Zealand's Marlborough region produce some exceptional Chardonnays, amongst them the 2007 Secret Stone that bursts with powerful citrus and tropical fruit flavours that are beautifully balanced with the region's renowned minerality and a nicely racy acidity.

This is a seafood-lover's wine to put on the table with whitebait fritters or shellfish and salad, and is temptingly priced at $20.99.

BUY OF THE WEEK: BLACKJACK's 2006 Chortle's Edge Bendigo Shiraz from Central Victoria's Harcourt Valley is full of fresh, ripe fruit flavours and ripe grape tannins, a toss-it-down drop at $18 to enjoy with the next barbecue.

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PHOTO CAPTIONS:

WHAT'S in a name – here's an Irish lilt that's a melody with Beef Wellington.

SEAFOOD lover's special from New Zealand's Marlborough region.
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