I first met up with David Lowe and his wife Jane Wilson (right) six or seven years ago when I was introduced to their impressive range of wines. Unusually, both David and Jane are winemakers for the family company, but each takes a different area of responsibility with David making the whites, whilst Jane makes the reds, though there is of course some cross-over of ideas and effort. There is a strong Scottish connection as Jane is a native of Oban who graduated as a vet from the University of Glasgow before emigrating to Australia. Here annual trip to Scotland has become a regular event on my calendar, as I always try to have lunch with Jane and taste through her latest releases.In summer 2008 we met once again at Glasgow’s Ubiquitous Chip restaurant, where I tasted through a snapshot of their current release wines.
Lowe Tinja Riesling 2007
Only 250 cases are made of this Mudgee Riesling which comes from the Nullo Mountain Vineyard at 1100 metres altitude and weighs in with just 11% alcohol. It has a very delicate, lime blossom nose that is fresh, cool and crisp with just a background note of wax. Bone dry, pithy apple and lemon fruit flood the palate, and this jas a decisive cut lemon acidity. “When you are working with natural acidity that’s what you get” says Jane. £9.75. 90/100
Lowe Tinja Sauvignon Blanc 2007
With only 12.5% alcohol this has a beautifully floral and delicate aroma with hints of passionfruit and ogen melon, and plenty of fresh, zippy lemon fruit. The palate has a fine juiciness, with a touch of mealy richness. The acidity is terrific again, with just enough fruit sweetness and a hint of breadth and width. £9.75. 88/100
Lowe Family Mudgee Reserve Shiraz 2005
The moderate 13.0% alcohol is partly due to half of the wine being a wild yeast ferment, and half whole bunches fermented with a Rhône yeast. Appealing nose of bramble and blackcurrant, with hints of violet and notes of caraway and exotic spice. Fourteen months in Fench oak puncheons has given a fine, toast and coffee background. Terrific palate too, with delicious, rounded, mouthfilling texture and svelte black fruit which melds into lithe, quite chocolaty tannin. £14.75. 92/100.
Lowe Family Mudgee Zinfandel 2005
A different sort of animal with its 15.0% alcohol, this terrrific Zinfandel has little notes of leather and anise before a juicy, quite bright cherry and raspberry edge to deep black fruit and a touch of pepper. There’s massive sweetness of fruit, with some raisin and deliciously lithe, mouthfuilling autumn-tinged fruit. Delightfully creamy, and rich, yet balanced. £15.25. 92/100.