Monday 18 August 2008


wine with david ellis

BACK in 1996 when Jim and Ruth Swift turned 12ha of their historic farming and grazing property at Orange in NSW's Central West over to wine grapes,  the Orange Viticultural Region as we now know it had not even been defined.

How quickly and how much things have changed, with Orange now a serious contender amongst Australia's cool climate wine makers, and with the Swift's Printhie label up there amongst the very best from this exciting new region.

Sons Ed and Dave Swift returned to the Printhie property in the early 2000s from "city jobs" in engineering and graphic designer respectively, and with winemaker Drew Tuckwell, who previously worked in the Hunter, north-east Victoria, McLaren Vale and for a while in Tuscany, have been instrumental in the "new look" Printhie wines.

Latest release is their reserve range Swift Family Heritage label that was launched this month with a 2004 Cabernet Sauvignon Shiraz and a 2004 Cabernet Sauvignon… elegant, beautifully flavoured wines that with only 300 6-bottle packs made of each are sure to be snapped up at better restaurants.

The 2004 Cabernet Sauvignon Shiraz is a stand-out, full of savoury, cranberry and plum flavours from the hand selected fruit, and with elegant ripe tannins; order it at better restaurants with prime rib or other beef dishes, or buy through the cellar door at $32 a bottle ($190 by the 6-bottle pack with free delivery in NSW, Queensland and Victoria. Phone 02 6366 8422.)

ONE FOR LUNCH: SEMILLON Sauvignon Blanc and seafood go hand-in-hand, and aficionados of this combination should look at Capel Vale's 2008  Regional Series Pemberton Semillon Sauvignon Blanc derived from fruit drawn from vineyards in three of Western Australia's coolest wine regions.

Intense aromas ranging through straw, melon, stone fruit and citrus complement the herbaceous palate, and there's no oak; pay $22.95 to kick off with oysters as a starter for a seafood spread.

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GET it while you can: just 1800 bottles are available of this stand-out red

SEAFOOD's worthy companion – they go hand-in-hand

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