Monday 24 March 2014



WORTHY of the Best name and
created for that very special occasion.

David Ellis

IT'S not every day we've the chance to enjoy a $200 wine, but just such an opportunity came our way a couple of weeks back when we shared a bottle of 2012 Best's Thomson Family Shiraz from Best's Wines at Great Western, in the Grampians north-west of Melbourne.

And what a WOW factor it turned out to have: made from fruit hand-harvested off just fifteen rows of some of the oldest, most-gnarled Shiraz vines in Australia, having been planted by Henry Best a-near 150 years ago in 1867, it has an almost explosive bouquet of dark fruits, bitter chocolate, dried flowers and intense white pepper.

Savour these with a swirl of the glass, and then be wonderfully seduced on the palate with mouth-filling, yet quite mellow, fragrant dark fruit flavours, and delightful tannins… just perfect with roast suckling pig on a spit, fresh garden veggies and a rich gravy.

TASSIE beauty that's ideal with carpaccio of
Tasmanian salmon with a white wine
vinaigrette, capers and chervil.
The Thomson family who bought the winery from Henry Best in 1920 are now "5th generation custodians" of Best's vineyards and made the first Best's Thomson Family Shiraz in 1992 to celebrate 100 years of the Thomson's settling in Best Western; they've made just twelve since from a dozen particularly outstanding quality vintages.

A very special wine for a very special occasion, the more so with 5-20 years cellaring.

ONE TO NOTE:  IF you've carpaccio of Tasmanian salmon on the menu as a starter for that next dinner party, a great drop to offer it with is a Bay of Fires Tasmanian Cuvee Rosé – particularly as it's from the salmon's home State and priced so nicely at $29.99.

Made from highest-quality fruit sourced from across Tasmania's four major viticultural regions, this is a great cool climate bubbly with loads of red berry fruit flavours, earthy mushrooms and crisp acidity; the creamy mouth-feel making it ideal with that carpaccio of Tasmanian salmon, that winemakers Ed Carr and Peter Dredge suggest be best served with a white wine vinaigrette, capers and chervil.

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