THEIR Wine by Brad name may be funky, the label even funkier, but the wine in the bottle is anything but a funky oddity, with the just-released Wine by Brad Cabernet Merlot 2008 up there with the best.
Owner and winemaker Brad Wehr opted out of the big corporate wine scene and set up Wine by Brad in 2003 in Western Australia's Margaret River, intent on creating quality wines with flavour, personality but no hefty price tag.
"It's been a wild seven years," he says. "But thanks to some hard work and some great mates we've been blessed through those seven years with receiving some of the best southern Margaret River fruit I'v
e ever tasted."
And he says the 2008 vintage in Margaret River was magical, enabling him to produce reds a tad richer than the previous vintage, and with firmer structure and tannins to ensure longer cellaring potential.
His 2008 Wine by Brad Cabernet Merlot comprises 45 per cent Merlot, 50 per cent Cabernet and 5 per cent Petit Verdot and Malbec, that between them deliver flavours of plums, red berries, dark chocolate and blackcurrants.
At $17 it falls within Brad's "no hefty price tag" criteria and is a great drop with a meat-lover's pizza or cooler-weather braised lamb shanks.
ONE FOR LUNCH: Now's the time of year we start thinking of winter fires and after-dinner "stickies," and one to do yourself a favour with is Cape Jaffa Wines' 2009 La Lune Botrytis Semillon from the Mount Benson region 300km south of Adelaide... and do it with a great food match of a bitter chocolate tart.
Certified by Australian Certified Organic this viscous "sticky" has beautifully complex apricot nectar and honeysuckle aromas, and a rich palate with good balance of acid and natural sweetness. Super value at $25 (350ml bottle.)
(NEED A FOOD/DRINK MATCH? Check out http://www.vintnews.com )
 CAPTURING flavour, personality without hefty price tag
 FIRE up winter with this and a tart of bitter chocolate