Monday, 27 July 2009

FRAN FIRES UP WITH TASSIE PINOT GRIS

Wc27Jul09

david ellis

PINOT Gris is a relatively new variety to be planted in Tasmania, but the island State's cool-climate winemakers are showing they are up there with the best in handling this delightful and increasingly popular grape.

Bay of Fires, whose winemaker Fran Austin is crafting some really exceptional wines from a number of classic varieties the company is having plenty of success with, has just released a 2008 Pinot Gris that's sure to prove a hit with those turning towards this very versatile food-match wine.

Using fruit from across various areas of Tasmania's vineyard regions, Fran has turned out a more-ish wine with classic Pinot Gris pear, citrus and spice flavours.

Pay $28.50 and enjoy with a wide range of Asian pork or chicken dishes, or with Atlantic salmon steaks topped with a sprinkling of mixed herbs.

ONE FOR LUNCH: Senior winemaker at Coonawarra's Katnook Estate, Wayne Stehbens is being pretty modest when he says 2006 was such a great vintage that wines that came out of it were "almost self-made."

He should mention also that he's got a more-than-average handle on the place: he's been making wine there for Katnook for 30 years.

The 2006 vintage in Coonawarra was a very early one with slightly above-average temperatures during summer and extending into the ripening period, so that the low-yielding vines had loads of flavour.

Wayne's 2006 Cabernet Sauvignon is one of his best: elegant and generously flavoured with rich dark berry, sweet oak and fine grained tannins.

Pay $40 and enjoy with prime rib and a Bordelaise sauce whose peppercorn, shallot and thyme flavours will match this wine perfectly.


(NEED A FOOD/DRINK IDEA? Check out  http://www.vintnews.com )

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PHOTO CAPTIONS:

[] CLASSIC with Asian dishes or salmon steaks

[] PERFECT with prime rib and Bordelaise sauce
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