(2021) A blend of fruit from the Taylor family's vineyards in the Clare Valley and from the Limestone Coast. There's a plummy character on the nose, a little wisp of something herby and lifted too. The full-on sweetness and chocolate density of the wine surprises as it hits the palate, a mocha coffee raft of black fruit flavours, super-ripe and mouth-filling. Plush is the word for this wine, with its creamy and generous tannins and acids, it's for immediate pleasure I'd say, as long as you like that uncompromisingly ripe and large-scaled style.
(2021) Barrossa-grown Tempranillo is fermented with wild yeasts and aged in oak for this red wine from the Hill-Smith family, who own Yalumba and Jansz among other brands. Though it weighs in with 14% alcohol, the colour is medium to pale, suggesting a lighter touch on the winemaking, and the nose has cherry cola aromas, a touch of wild strawberry and spice. In the mouth the fruit is super sweet, a creamy fruit coulis style, with barely perceptible tannins and ripe, generous acidity barely ruffling the flow. Easy-drinking with a captial Easy.
(2021) Ten months in a combination of American and French oak for this wine, which I'd certainly describe as classic Barossa Shiraz. That's to say it is bountiful and crammed with fruit, but it absolutely does not lack in freshness or vibrant personality. There's elegant, floral lift and raspberry brightness to sit against the creamy depth of vanilla-infused berries. In the mouth it has a racy acidity, firm, slick tannins and loads of almost mindlessly pleasurable chocolate-smoothed dark berries. Watch the video for more information and food-matching ideas.
(2021) This is 70% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot, aged 15 months French and American oak. There's something a little bit nutty on the nose here, tobacco-spicy and touch herbal that proceeds typical blackcurrant aromas of the Cabernet. On the palate a big, sweet surge of black fruit, really intense and concentrated, fruit skin bite, firm tannins and keen black plum acids in a powerhouse style, but retains excellent freshness too.
(2021) Portugal's great grape transported to South Australia, and this really emphasises floral, violet and old roses perfume of the Touriga Nacional, some buoyant red fruits and a little cinammon spice too. In the mouth substantial and creamy, lots of ripeness and juiciness, but a black fruit gloss and weight. My favourite wine of this small sample, with some substance without weight, and the balance of sweet and supple fruit, tannin and acid is excellent.
(2021) Crimson with a distinctly pink hue, this has a buouyant nose, lifted with confiture raspberry and plenty of floral and herbal nuances. It's 12.5% alcohol ensures it is light and energetic on the palate, and although there is plenty of ripeness and sweetness to the red and black berry fruits, a stripe of drying tannin and cherry-pit acidity gives savouriness to the finish.
(2021) Vibrant crimson in colour, there's a lightly vegetal character to cherry fruit, maybe a hint of tobacco in there. Sweet fruited on the palate, it is medium bodied and has good freshness thanks to the slightly prominent acidity and that little vegetal/herbal character. Straighforward, finishing with a chalky dryness and a typically Italiante bitter twist.
(2021) Family-owned Yalumba are big on sustainability, and now have a small range of organically certified wines, including this Bordeaux blend. Very deep in colour, some mint and eucalypt, some of the Cabernet leafiness is there, but also a strawberry and plum softness of fruit from the Merlot. In the mouth it tastes relatively sweet, but there is depth of flavour, cassis and cream, and creaminess of texture too, the tannins very soft and the acidity quite cherry-like to give an easy-drinking picture. It's a bit of a barbecue banker this with it's attractive charm but a bit of intensity. Watch the video for more information.
(2021) The vines here are 95 years old, on red clay soils. Made in open fermenters, aged on fine lees in steel for 12 months. Lovely pale colour, translucent on rim, quite herbal with small red berries. The fruit is firm and elegant on the palate, savoury, juicy, less overtly sweet fruited than some but has that clean, long, elegant character.
(2020) Mencia, the favourite grape of the Bierzo region in northwest Spain, is much rarer in Australia. Often associated with Italian varieties, here the Oliver family present an approachable red that is a really good expression of the variety. Like a turbo-charged Beaujolais in a way, it is crisp and juicy, packed with vivid cherry, red plum and a wisp of smoke and tobacco, there's abundant creaminess too, the palate supple and deep, but never losing that edge of energy and freshness. Unfortunately no UK stockists are listed for this limited release wine at time of review.