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New Zealand's Oyster Bay Merlot 2007

New Zealand's Oyster Bay Merlot 2007 [©Max Crus]

Pfeiffer The Carson Gewurzraminer 2008 from Rutherglen in Victoria
Hahndorf Hill Winery Adelaide Hills Sauvignon Blanc 2008
Exceptional products from Riverina Grove, Griffith, NSW
Metala Shiraz Cabernet 2006 from Langhorne Creek in South Australia

Warning : Dew to industrial action at the Max Crus Industries Whine Writing Factory, this weeks’ column is bought to you bye management of the Unfairfax Wine Media Group. Due to the low starting point, quality of the column is not expected to be effected or at least no won will notice.

Industry news : Boosting expectations for the coming vintage, the head of the Hunter Valley Winemakers Cartel, Barry Squirrel, speaking at their self-awards function, said “despite trying conditions, what with drought, fires, frost, pestilence and not enough government assistance, next year’s vintage will be the best yet. Quantity will be down but quality will be up”. (See advertisement page 3 for more details.)

Interestingly at the “Barons of the Barossa” bash, local identity and mettwurst munching legend of the area Dieter Freeman, echoed similar sentiments, “despite very trying conditions, what with drought, fires, frost, pestilence and not enough government assistance, next year’s vintage will be the best yet. Quantity will be down but quality will be up”. (See advertisement page 5.)

Co-incidentally, the heads of the Magnificent Margaret River Management Group, Cherish Coonawarra Consortium, McLaren Vale Bushing Buddies Self-Congratulation Board, Geelong Might Be Bloody Cold and Windy But Perfect For Pinot Promotional Pool, Granite Belt Stony Soils Are Super Society, and the Let’s Not Forget Tasmania Marketing Mob, all released similar, well, actually the same, statements. (Please see classifies.)

This week’s specials :

Leasingham Clare Valley Riesling, 2008, $20
Steely herbaceousness on the back palate. Hints of East African carva lime. Excellent value. Enjoy with Kumamatos oysters. 9.9/10.

Stonehaven Cabernet Sauvignon 2006, $20
Blackcurrant undercurrent with upfront nose showing shades of Phat-berries. Excellent value. Enjoy with double roasted Turkmenistan lamb balls. 9.9/10.

Penfolds Grange 2004, $975 ($970 by the dozen)
Another iconic release from a difficult vintage. You can say what you like because no-one has tried it and nor are they likely to. Excellent value. Enjoy with smugness. 11/10.


Note : The above brands are for sale, please see advertisement opposite page.


Tapanappa ‘Etages’ Tiers Vineyard Chardonnay 2007, $71.50
Management material, this will bring ‘tiers’ to the eyes of chardonnay lovers when they realise they can’t afford it. Superior stuff. 9/10.

Metala Shiraz Cabernet 2006, $22
Maybe I just don’t get it but this seemed pretty plain. Okay for journos. 8/10.

Pfeiffer The Carson Gewurztraminer 2008, $16.50
Popular with gay stylists, of which, thankfully, there aren’t enough of them to force the price up. Great gear for nix so give your tastebuds a cheap makeover. 8.8/10.

Hahndorf Hill Winery Adelaide Hills Sauvignon Blanc 2008, $21
Sav is perfect dinner prep’ wine, goes with garlic, chilli, ginger, coriander, capsicum, mushrooms, zucchini, broc, anchovies, and, well, everything. 8.5/10.

Riverina Grove Garlic, Chilli and Ginger 2008, $5.
Talk of the devil...who would have thought this simple combination could be that much better out of a jar than by your own hand, but it was, and by a fair margin. 9.2/10.

Oyster Bay (NZ) Merlot 2007, $20.
Make it look like you have given some thought to it - which of course by then you would have - have this with Oysters Kilpatrick. 8.1/10.




  • Riverina (NSW)
  • Adelaide Hills (SA)
  • Fleurieu Peninsula (SA)
  • McLaren Vale (SA)
  • Rutherglen (VIC)

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September 03rd, 2008
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