Sunday, November 6, 2011

Session 8 - Riesling

With the weather hotting up, it's time to crack open some Riesling! If you're unsure about Riesling, or think it's all sweet and comes from Germany....well think again...Australia makes some cracking dry (all the sugar has been fermented away) Rieslings.

Clare and Eden Valley (SA) are Australia's best known regions for Riesling, but there's plenty of good drinking from further afield with Western Australia, Tasmania, Canberra district and Victoria's Great Western and Henty all producing great examples. Orange is a relatively new region with high altitude and is tipped to be a exciting up and coming Riesling producer.

This #SwirlSniffSpit tasting, as always, seeks to show you a diverse range of styles and broaden your horizons beyond the Riesling your parents (or grandparents) drank.

Bracket 1 - Clare Valley (SA)
2011 Knappstein Handpicked Riesling
2010 Petaluma Hanlin Hill Riesling @PetalumaWine
2011 Sevenhill 'Inigo' Riesling

Bracket 2 - Eden Valley (SA)
2010 Karra Yerta Riesling @KarraYertaWines
2005 Karra Yerta Riesling @KarraYertaWines

Bracket 3 - Canberra District
2011 Capital Wines 'The Whip' Riesling @CapitalWines
2011 Lark Hill Riesling @LarkHillWines

Bracket 4 - Great Western/Henty (VIC)
2011 Bests Great Western Riesling @BestsWines
2011 The Story Henty Riesling @StoryWines
2010 Jamsheed Great Western Westgate Vineyard Riesling @JamsheedWines

Bracket 5 - Great Southern (WA)
2010 Xabregas Artisan Riesling @Xabregas_Wines
2010 Xabregas Estate Riesling @Xabregas_Wines
2011 Abbey Creek Vineyard Porongurup Riesling

Bracket 6 - Off Dry/Sweet Riesling
2009 Zilliken Forstmeister Geltz Saarburger Rausch Riesling Spätlese (Mosel Saar Ruwer Germany) @Eurocentric
2010 Weingut Emrich-Schonleber Lenz Riesling Qba (Nahe, Germany) @Eurocentric
2009 Meadowbank Estate FGR Riesling (TAS)

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Thursday, October 20, 2011

Swirl Sniff Spit - Session 7 - Semillon Round-Up

Swirl, Sniff, Spit's  Semillon tasting  sought to demonstrate the diversity of styles that can be found with the Semillon grape.  Brief tasting notes that follow represent the range of wines shown on the night.

Bracket 1 - Sparkling
Bimbadgen, Hunter Valley, NV
Ripe, citrus fresh, easy going ability to drink now.  Good aromatics, with some tang.  A quaffer - get it down you.

St Agouant, 1999 'Blanc des Blancs'
Over ten years on lees gives the wine smooth and creamy texture and mouthfeel,  Balanced with good acid structure and fine aroma.

Bracket 2 - Young Semillon
Murray Street Vineyards Semillon 2010
Excellent value for $20.  Showing some developmental attributes, but this was all about fresh citrus and lemon curd on the night.  Wanted a plate of calamari to accompany this.  Suspect it has some life ahead of it too.

Scarborough Wine Green Label
Good value too.  Made more in a 'savvy' style, exhibiting youthful and fresh attributes.  Hebaceous, grassy and a hint of lime.  Crisp 'n' crunchy too.

Bracket 3 - South Burnet, QLD
Barambah First Grid 2008
Offered to Swirl, Sniff, Spit on the understanding that it was in the 'hole' and needed some further developmental time to show its best.  A slight slatey note with some pickle characters and asparagus.  

Clovely Estate Left Field Semillon 2006
Showing lovely toasty and age characters as befits the age.  Good length and honeyed notes.  Top drawer and a perfect segue to Bracket 4.

Bracket 4 - Aged Semillon
Meerea Park Alexander Munro 2005
Layered, complex.  Still showing citrus toward the back end and a creaminess through the middle.  Plenty in reserve: you think the wine is done when it kicks into 2nd gear.  Had me in raptures on the night.  Table wine of the night for me.

Peter Lehmann Margaret 2005
More bling than a rude boy rap artist this wine.  Classic Barossa warmer climate profile.  Still showing some texture and fruit in its profile.  Classy and elegant.

Bracket 5 - Off-Dry and Barrel Ferment
Thomas Wines 6 Degrees Semillon
Enticingly aromatic and shows its good dose of extra sugar in an approachable way.  Nice shape approaching its conclusion.  Reminiscent of crushed 'love hearts' for those familiar with those sweets/ lollies.

Juniper Estate Semillon 2008
Barrel fermentation provides interesting aromatics and a touch of funk from some indigenous yeasts.  Toasty, a touch of herb.  The palate comes across a bit flinty, with a hint of mineral.  More than one comment on the night that there were some similarities to Chardonnay.

Bracket 6 - Stickie & Sweeties
Punt Road Venda 2010 Botrytis Semillon
Honeyed aromas, delicate citrus and mandarin.  Lovely unctuous texture in the mouth. Where's the cheese?

De Bortoli Black Noble
Basically Noble One from a Solera.  A barrique of Noble One is held back each year and added into the Solera.  Started out in 1979, average age of 18 years.  Since 2003 has been 100% Semillon (prior to that some PX was included).  Caramelised toffee, raisins, coffe, chocolate.  Need I say more?  I don't do Xmas pud - this will be my liquid substitute this year.

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Thursday, October 6, 2011

Session 7 - Semillon

Hunter Valley Semillon has been described as Australia's gift to the world.  Like many grape varieties it originates in France, specifically in the Bordeaux region where it is often blended with Sauvignon Blanc to make Bordeaux Blanc whites, or made into sweet botrytis affected styles as with Sauternes-Barsac.

Within Australia, there are three principal regions where Semillon is grown and made into wines of renown: Margaret River (WA), Barossa Valley (SA), and Hunter Valley (NSW).

This #SwirlSniffSpit tasting, as ever, has brought together a tasting encompassing Semillon in a broad variety of styles, demonstrating its versatility, and showing why it should be in your fridge this summer.

Bracket 1 - Sparkling
Bimbadgen Estate NV Sparkling, Hunter Valley @bimbadgen
St Agouant 1999 Brut Blanc de Blanc, Bordeaux @TheTruffleManOz

Bracket 2 - Young Semillon
Scarborough Wine Green Label Semillon 2011, Hunter Valley @ScarboroughWine
Murray Street Vineyards Semillon 2010, Barossa Valley @MSVWine

Bracket 3 - South Burnet, Queensland
Clovely Estate Left Field Semillon 2010 @ClovelyWine
Barambah Estate Semillon 2008 @BarambahWines

Bracket 4 - Aged Semillon
Meerea Park 2005 Alexander Munro Semillon, Hunter Valley @MeereaPark 
Peter Lehmann Wines Margaret Semillon 2005, Barossa Valley @PLWines

Bracket 5 - Off-Dry & Barrel Fermented
Thomas Wines 6 Degrees Semillon 2010, Hunter Valley @ThomasWines
Juniper Estate Semillon 2009, Margaret River

Bracket 6 - Dessert Wines
De Bortoli Wines Black Noble @DeBortoliWines
Punt Road Botrytis Semillon 2010, Yarra Valley @PuntRdWines

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Friday, September 30, 2011

#Semsational - The Taste of Summer?

#Semsational is an initiative to introduce the good wine buying public to the delights of young Semillon wines.  Semillon has been described as "Australia's gift to the world", yet it is oft said that many outside of NSW aren't aware of the delights of this vinous nectar.

As a young wine, it is a perfect accompaniment for much of what we eat in Queensland: seafood, salads; on its own or with friends.  Another thing in its favour, low alcohol,  meaning you can have a glass without feeling squiffy!

So, #semsational brings to you this spiffing Semillon selection.  Interested? Era Bistro, 4th October at 7pm, $15 a ticket with canapes...

Scarborough Green Label 2011
Tempus Two 2011
DeIuliis Semillon 2011
Thomas Wines Braemore 2011
McGuigan Bin 9000 2011
Allandale Winemakers Reserve Single Vineyard 2011
Briar Ridge Dairy Hill 2011
Bimbadgen Estate 2011
Tower Estate 2011
Glandore Elliot Semillon 2011
Brokenwood 2011
Peppertree Tallawanta 2011
First Creek 2011
Tyrrell’s Vat 1 2011
Tulloch Wines 2011
Saddlers Creek 2011

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Session 6 - Grenache

Grenache is one of Australia's own.  Despite its origins being of Northern Spain (one of its synonyms is Tinta Aragones - red of Aragon) and it being lauded as a key component of Southern Rhone blends, Grenache was one of the grape varieties brought to Australia by James Busby not long after settlement.

Much neglected for many years, it was often used in fortified wines to provide alcohol and bulk, some of Australia's oldest vines were pulled in the 80's vine pull.  Thankfully the old fines are treasured and from them some stunning wines made.

Swirl, Sniff, Spit loves Grenache and is gleeful at the prospect of this glorious Grenache line-up being brought to the fine folk of Brisbane.

McLaren Vale Cadenzias
d'Arenberg 2009 The Cadenzia GSM @darenberg
Dogridge Cadenzia Grenache 2007 @dogridge
Maximus Cadenzia GSM 2009 @maximuswines
Oliver's Taranga Cadenzia Grenache 2009 @OliversTaranga
Samuel's Gorge Cadenzia 2009 Grenache @SamuelsGorge
Yangarra Cadenzia 2006 @Yangarra
Barossa, Northern Spain and Southern Rhone
Vieux Telegraphe Le Pigeolet des Brunier Vin de Pays 2008
Sons of Eden Kennedy vintage tbc @SonsOfEden
Clovely Left Field GSM 10 @ClovelyWine
Cirillo The Vincent 2009
MDV Eden Valley 2009 @MDVwines
Turkey Flat 2009 @TurkeyFlat
Palacios Remondo 'La Vendimia' 2010
Vina Ginesa Rojo 2009

Session 5 - Cabernet Sauvignon - Round Up

So Swirl, Sniff, Spit's 5th session focussed on Cabertnet and friends.  Here are some notes on the wines shown.

Bracket 1 – Classic ‘Bordeaux’
Margaret River – Wise Lot 80 Cabernet Sauvignon 2009
Showing regional typicity: dried leaf, touch of mint; blackfruits, cassis and cedar. Fine tannins

Hawkes Bay – Te Mata Woodthorpe Merlot Cabernets 2009
Softer, more fruit driven.  Balanced palate exhibiting some chocolate, blackcurrant and plum.  Good structure and length.

Bordeaux – Bordeaux Supérieur Vieux Naudin 2009
Lovely cigar and plum aroma, some ripeness in the palate.  Good finish with some grip.

Bracket 2 – The Valleys
Clare Valley - Thomson Estate Back Blocks Cabernet Sauvignon 2008
Pretty aromatics; chocolate, plum and cedar through the middle leading to a grippy little finish.
Yarra Valley – De Bortoli Estate Grown Cabernet Sauvignon 2008
Some funk readily apparent on the nose, meaty and savoury.  Smooth, silken and gentle persistence.  Some De Bortoli hallmarks exhibited.

Bracket 3 – Queensland’s Own
Granite Belt – Bent Road Cabernet Sauvignon 2005
Just turning, still exhibiting some fruit but also some secondary fig and toffee.  Good soft and long finish. 
Granite Belt – Bent Road Cabernet Sauvignon Merlot 2009
Still exhibiting youth.  Fine wine with some good chalky tannin.

Bracket 4 – Victorian High Country
Pyrenees – Blue Pyrenees Cabernet Sauvignon 2009
Quite concentrated, somewhat fruit shy.  Hint of mint with a trailing mineral finish. 
Pyrenees – Dalwhinnie Moonambel Cabernet
Smooth rounded.  Elements in check and balance.  Clean and silken conclusion.  A winner. 

Bonus Round - Barossa
Swirl, Sniff, Spit was fortunate to have Murray Street Vineyard winemaker Andrew Seppelt in attendance.  Andrew was kind enough to bring along his 2008 Cabernet Sauvignon for the crowd.

Generous fruit and spicy oak.  Length to remember.

Bracket 5 – The Terra Rossa
Coonawarra – Yalumba Menzies 2007
Strong eucalypt and menthol aroma.  Blackcurrant, cedar, hint of violets. Fine grained dryish tannins - balanced.
Coonawarra - Zema Estate Cabernet Sauvignon 2008
Entry is soft, mid-weight with some cedary oak.  Expected cassis and mint. It smells of the Coonawarra soil.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Session 5 - Cabernet Sauvignon

The bastard love child of Cabernet Franc and Sauvignon Blanc is a relatively young grape variety from around the 16th Century.  It’s quite a sociable beast, loving to hang out with friends and family such as Cabernet Franc (is that weird – hanging out with your Dad?), Malbec, Merlot and Petit Verdot.
Its home is unarguably Bordeaux where the most famous examples make grown men cry and bank managers weep.
Bracket 1 – Classic ‘Bordeaux’
Margaret River – Wise Lot 80 Cabernet Sauvignon 2009 @TheCrushGroup
Hawkes Bay – Te Mata Woodthorpe Cabernet Merlot 2009
Bordeaux – Bordeaux Supérieur Vieux Naudin 2009 @WorldWineEstate @AlanHunter

Bracket 2 – The Valleys
Clare Valley - Thomson Estate Back Blocks Cabernet Sauvignon 2008 @ByrneVineyards
Yarra Valley – De Bortoli Estate Grown Cabernet Sauvignon 2008 @DeBortoliWines

Bracket 3 – Queensland’s Own
Granite Belt – Bent Road Cabernet Sauvignon 2005 @WineMakerGlen
Granite Belt – Bent Road Cabernet Sauvignon Merlot 2009 @WineMakerGlen

Bracket 4 – Victorian High Country
Pyrenees – Blue Pyrenees Cabernet Sauvignon 2009 @BluePyrenees
Pyrenees – Dalwhinnie Moonambel Cabernet @DalwhinnieWines

Bracket 5 – The Terra Rossa
Coonawarra – Yalumba Menzies 2007 @YalumbaMenzies
Coonawarra - Zema Estate Cabernet Sauvignon 2008 @CoonawarraK

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Session 4 - Shiraz

With its home in the Rhone as Syrah, what we know as Shiraz in Australia unarguably put this country on the global wine map.   Being grown in pretty much every wine-producing region in Australia, Swirl Sniff Spit has assembled a dozen Shiraz/ Syrah to show this grape off at its best!

Margaret River – Vinedrops The Collection 2009
Mount Barker – Plantagenet Shiraz 2008
Canberra District - Capital Wines Frontbencher 2009
Hunter Valley - De Iuliis Steven Vineyard Shiraz 2009
Grampians – The Story Sableux Shiraz 2009
Yarra Valley – De Bortoli Estate Syrah 2008
Granite Belt – Pyramids Road Shiraz 2009
Hawkes Bay - Te Mata Bullnose Syrah
Great Western – Best’s Bin 1 Shiraz 2009
Great Western – Best’s Bin 0 Shiraz 2008
Barossa Valley – Murray Street Vineyard Greenock Shiraz 2006
McLaren Vale – Gemtree Obsidian Shiraz 2008

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Session 3 - Pinot Noir

"A seductive, yet fickle mistress", or "sex in a glass".  Pinot Noir has been christened thus and a number of other names, many of which reference its reputation as one of the most challenging of varietals to grow.  Pinot Noir is "the heartbreak grape".

As ever, Swirl, Sniff, Spit has pulled together a global line-up designed to showcase what is great and good about this most "romantic of varietals".

Bracket 1
Blanc de Noir: Henschke Lenswood Blanc de Noir NV
Rose: De Bortoli Yarra Valley Estate Grown Pinot Noir Rose 2010

Bracket 2
Tasmania: Frogmore Creek Pinot Noir 2008
Adelaide Hills: Vinteloper Pinot Noir 2010

Bracket 3
Mornington Peninsula: Stonier Reserve Pinot Noir 2008
Yarra: Hoddle's Creek Estate Pinot Noir 2010

Bracket 4
NZ Martinborough: The Escarpment Vineyard Pinot Noir 2008
NZ Otago: Quartz Reef Pinot Noir 2008

Bracket 5
Bourgogne AC: Louis Jadot Bourgogne Rouge AC 2008
1er Cru: Camille Giroud Volnay 1er Cru 2006
Bonus: David Clark Passe-Tout-Grain 2008 (Pinot/ Gamay blend)

Bracket 6
Oregon: Evesham Wood Eola-Amity Pinot Noir 2009
Chilean: Casas Del Bosque Gran Reserva Pinot Noir 2009

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Session 2 - Chardonnay - Round Up

As the world is focusing on the great varietal Chardonnay on International Chardonnay Day - 26th May 2011 - it seems timely to get this wrap from the 2nd Swirl, Sniff, Spit session.

The line up featured stellar examples and highlighted much that is right and good about Chardonnay.  All we needed was some Blanc de Blanc Champagne to round things off!

Pair 1
1. Stefano Lubiana Primavera 2010, Tasmania

Slatey, a nod of grapefruit.  But the magic happens with the taught line that just extends.....Many have Stefano Lubiana amongst the top tier of Australian Chardonnay producers, this showed why.

2. Christian Moreaux 2009, Chablis AC, France
Racy, balanced and exhibiting lemon with some flinty aroma and flavour.  Smooth, long and refreshing.

Pair 2
1. De Bortoli Reserve Chardonnay 2008, Yarra Valley, Australia @DeBortoliWines
No new oak, matured in four and five year old old oak.  Creamy, dairy, yoghurt - almost a touch of Cottage Cheese - from full malo.  Elegance and length.  Superb!

2. Eldridge Estate Estate Chardonnay 2008, Mornington Peninsula, Australia @EldridgeEstate
Pineapple, grapefruit and peach through the middle.  Comely, familiar yet not overworked.  Good presence of toasty oak, again not overdone.  Quality shining throughout.

Pair 3
1. Witches Falls Wild Ferment Chardonnay 2009, Granite Belt, Queensland, Australia @TheWineryWitch
Bouquet of melon and vanilla, oak here supports, not dominates the fruit.  Not quite as defined, giving glimpses of where it will be with further vine age.
2. BK Wines Piccadilly Valley Chardonnay 2009, Adelaide Hills, Australia @BKWines
Wild yeast fermented in 50% new oak with leese stirring for 9 months.  Aromatic florals - very Adelaide Hills according to some attendees familiar.  Fruit is concentrated and powerful, peach leading a line with some supporting citrus.

Pair 4
1. Fraser Gallop Estate Chardonnay 2009, Margaret River, Western Australia, Australia @FraserGallopEst
Lemony, buttery, peach.  It has it all but the fruit quality shines.  A backbone of acid keeps it all going and holds it in check.

2. Forrest Hill Estate Chardonnay 2009, Mount Barker, Western Australia @ForestHillWines
tight on opening, slowly unfurling to deliver typical stonefruit.  Represents its place well, cool climate acid presented with a driving line.  Length, impressive, extensive; the wine and the line.

Pair 5
1. Felton Road Chardonnay 2009, Central Otago, New Zealand @FeltonRoadWine
Toasty, nutty oak here.  It's a Chardonnay for those who want quality but want Chardonnay with all elements present. good texture, with some opening fink and grapefruit.

2. Man O' War Vineyard Valhalla Chardonnay 2009, Waiheke Island, New Zealand @ManOWarNZWine
Reductive on opening.  Shakes this sulphuric cloak off to deliver lovely minerality.  Taut and complex, struck match as mentioned.  Citrus and pear with nutty complexity.

Pair 6
1. Domaine Christian Moreau 1er Cru Chablis 2009
Very light, green tinged.  Oak present - barely.  Minerally lime, tart citrus.  Balance, elegance

2. Domaine Bouchard Per et Fils Beaune de Chateau 1er Cru 2009
Beautifully structured, with intense chalky minerality.  Comes from four different 1er Cru vineyards, where reds are the norm in Beaune.  Delicate ripe pineapple and citrus flavours.  Had me going "Wow, more please Vicar".

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Session 2 - Chardonnay

Love it or loathe it, Chardonnay is quite a polarising variety.  Many say "I don't like Chardonnay", but which one?  As with many of the great varietals, Chardonnay can be greatly influenced by the of the winemaker.  Many of the great wines of the world are made with Chardonnay: Champagne, the great whites of Burgundy, icons of Australia such as Leeuwin Estate Art Series Chardonnay, Oakridge 864 Chardonnay, Cullen Kevin John...I could go on.

This line up of Chardonay at the second Swirl, Sniff, Spit event is designed to showcase what is great and good about this most noble of varietals.

Pair 1
1. Stefano Lubiana Primavera 2010, Tasmania
2. Christian Moreaux 2009, Chablis AC, France

Pair 2
1. De Bortoli Reserve Chardonnay 2008, Yarra Valley, Australia @DeBortoliWines
2. Eldridge Estate Estate Chardonnay 2008, Mornington Peninsula, Australia @EldridgeEstate

Pair 3
1. Witches Falls Wild Ferment Chardonnay 2009, Granite Belt, Queensland, Australia @TheWineryWitch
2. BK Wines Picadilly Valley Chardonnay 2009, Adelaide Hills, Australia @BKWines

Pair 4
1. Fraser Gallop Estate Chardonay 2009, Margaret River, Western Australia, Australia @FraserGallopEst
2. Forrest Hill Estate Chardonnay 2009, Mount Barker, Western Australia @ForestHillWines

Pair 5
1. Felton Road Chardonnay 2009, Central Otago, New Zealand @FeltonRoadWine
2. Man O' War Vineyard Valhalla Chardonnay 2009, Waiheke Island, New Zealand @ManOWarNZWine

Pair 6
1. Les Heretiers Du Comte Lafon '09 Macon Villages, Macon, France2. Burgundy 1er Cru TBC

Monday, April 25, 2011

Session 1 - Aromatic Whites - Round Up

by The Wine Punter

The first Swirl Sniff Spit event took place on 19th April at Era Bistro in West End.  These monthly event are about bringing the Brisbane wine community together through informal, structured events, whereby we are exposed to some of the great examples of particular varieties from both Australia and overseas.  

The event is an opportunity to share these tastings with the twitter community via #swirlsniffspit and to encourage online discussion.
Below is a list of the wines tasted on the night.  For more information about upcoming events check out this website or @swirlsniffspit on twitter.  

After each pairing a vote was taken on which was the preferred wine with the results shown in brackets.
Pair 1 – Sauvignon Blanc.
Isabel Sauvignon Blanc, 2010, New Zealand (2)
Acidic, lively and delicate.  Not a lot of up-front fruit but very well rounded.  Would pair well with goat’s cheese.
Rollander, Sancerre, France (11)
Green, herbaceous, grassy and pretty nose.   Plenty of fruit on the palate, delicious.
Pair 2 – Riesling.
Heggies Riesling, 2010, Eden Valley (4)
Sherbet on the nose. Quite drying acid on the palate.

De Bortoli Kabinett Riesling, 2010, Yarra Valley (9)
Floral nose.  James @twoglasstaste suggested it’s “apple blossom soaked in kero”.  13g of residual sugar. Slaty texture with golden delicious apple flavour on the palate.  Would be a great match with pork belly and san choi bao.
Pair 3 – Pinot Grigio
Joseph Pinot Grigio, 2010, McLaren Vale (6)
Made with fruit from the Adelaide Hills and McLaren Vale this wine has plenty of fruit weight with at lean, crisp racy palate.
Tiefenbruner Pinot Grigio, 2009, Sudtirol, Italy (7)
This is a traditional style Grigio from Northern Italy and one of the oldest producers in the country.  Pinot Grigio has a short growing season which results in a wine which is high in acid.  This wine displayed fresh bosh pear characteristics with a nice minerally palate.

Pair 4 – Pinot Gris
Spy Valley, 2010, New Zealand. (1)
Organic viticulture, a similar climate to Alsace. A viscous wine with typical ‘oily’ characteristics.
Domaine Schlumberger, 2004, Alsace. (12)
This wine has a beautiful colour, testament to some bottle age.  Traditionally made to drink early it is clear that Pinot Gris can age well.  This wine is from one of the oldest producers in Alsace and was the wine of the night for most.  Baked apple pie comes to mind when tasting this wine, delicious.

Pair 5 – Viognier
Yalumba’Virgilius’, 2008, Eden Valley S.A. (4)
Both of these wines were made in similar fashion, organic, whole bunch pressed, wild yeast ferment.  This is a wine which could stand up to gamey meats such as venison.  
Yves Cuilleron ‘Les Chaillets’ 2009, Condrieu, France. (9)
Ginger, floral nose.  From an appellation devoted to Viognier at the top of the Rhone Valley.  One of the tasting notes which was thrown around when comparing these two wines was ‘tinned two fruits v’s ginger crème brulee’.  

Pair 6 – Gewurztraminer
Stonecroft, 2009, Hawkes Bay, New Zealand (3)
Gewerz’ is ‘the’ aromatic wine with such a generous nose.  Plenty of spice on this one, less candied and a great palate balance of fruit and spice.
Domaine Zind-Humbrecht, 2008, Alsace, France (9)
Slaty soil and a long growing season has produced a most beautiful example of this variety.  Rose petals and Turkish delight.  Delicious.

So that concludes the rundown of the wines from the first session, the next session will look exclusively at Chardonnay and is at Era Bistro on the 17th May. Events are open to all, but numbers are limited, so by invitation only. Keep an eye out for information from @SwirlSniffSpit on or around the 9th May.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Session 1 - Aromatic Whites

We've had a great response for the first #SwirlSniffSpit session - many thanks to those who responded and who we've confirmed for the session.  So...

They're white, they're aromatic.  They represent some of the best known varietals - red or white - in the wine world, old and new.

In this session we're going to look at classic white aromatics, an example of each type from the Old World (think Europe) and New Old (think Australia and elsewhere) - with the exception of the Riesling, where we look at an Australian take on the German Kabinett style.

The session will run from 18:00-20:00 where we will be tasting the above wines, led by the qualified members of the Swirl, Sniff, Spit team.  After the tasting it would be great to stay around, share thoughts on the wines, share a glass of something and partake in some platters that our kind hosts, Era Bistro, are putting on (whilst the wine is free, platters are to be paid for).

Sauvignon Blanc
1. Isabella Sauvignon Blanc, 2010, New Zealand
2. Rollander, Sancerre, France

1. Heggies Riesling 2010, Eden Valley
2. De Bortoli Kabinett Riesling 2010, Yarra Valley

Pinot Grigio
1. Joseph Pinot Grigio 2010, McLaren Vale
2. Tiefenbrunner Pinot Grigio 2009, Südtirol, Italy

Pinot Gris
1. Spy Valley Pinot Gris 2010, NZ
2. Domaine Schlumberger 2004, Alsace, France

1. Yalumba Virgilius, Eden Valley, 2008
2. Yves Cuilleron "Les Chaillets" 2009, Condrieu, France

1. Stonecroft, 2009, NZ
2. Domaine Zind-Humbrecht, 2008, Alsace, France

Thursday, April 7, 2011

#SwirlSniffSpit is Born

The passion shared by some individuals at the consumer end of the Wine Community and some professionals within the industry have created Swirl, Sniff, Spit.

Swirl, Sniff, Spit is a monthly hosted, themed, structured wine tasting session held the third Tuesday of each month at Era Bistro.

While we get our shiny website up and running, follow us on twitter at for more info.

Happy tasting!