2012 Wirra Wirra Angelus Cabernet Sauvignon: Tasting Note

Given the substantial proportion of Shiraz planted in McLaren Vale (approximately 51% of 2013 vintage), I’m pleasantly surprised when I rediscover Cabernet in the region.  McLaren Vale is a great region for showing off the vast array of subregional variation – a combination of different climates, altitudes, and about 19 different soil types.  Consequently, picking out the cooler spots in McLaren Vale can yield some sensational parcels of Cabernet.

2012 Wirra Wirra Angelus

Wirra Wirra Angelus

Earlier I looked at the perennial favourite Wirra Wirra Church Block, which has a good dollop of Cabernet Sauvignon in there.  While at the other end of the portfolio price list, the Wirra Wirra 2012 Angelus again shows that McLaren Vale can do Cabernet Sauvignon very well.  The perfume was quite apparent in the room without overwhelming. And I use the term perfume in particular, as the Angelus was distinctly floral (old fashioned rose), complemented by dark ripe fruit, warm spices, and hints of chocolate/choc-mint.

On the palate the  2012 Wirra Wirra Angelus Cabernet Sauvignon was super fine, with slowing building adhesive tannins.  Precisely balanced, mid to full body, with no noticeable alcohol heat. While not a massive wine, but with persistence of flavour that lingers with great poise.  Showing the usual suspects of dark fruit, blueberries, ripe black cherry. Suggestions of herbaceousness, and a subtle herbal sage character.  With 15 months in French oak and only 20% new, the oak character is definitely in the background. Probably explaining the silky smooth mouthfeel.

Food match: roast lamb studded with rosemary and roasted garlic.

RRP $70
Alc 14.0%
Region: McLaren Vale
Source: Provided by producer

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Seppeltsfield and FINO give Barossa a Boost

Seppeltsfield’s redeveloped c1900 Cellar Door and new restaurant, FINO at Seppeltsfield, have been officially opened by South Australian Premier The Hon Jay Weatherill MP, in what has been celebrated as one of the Barossa’s most significant gastronomic tourism endeavours in recent history.

At a launch event on Friday 21st November, the 3 million dollar Seppeltsfiled Cellar Door project was unveiled to the wide acclaim and enthusiasm of over 500 guests, which included State MPs, Federal Senators, local councillors, South Australian business leaders and Barossa food & wine identities.

Seppeltsfield in Barossa

Seppeltsfield in Barossa

The visitor area of the Seppeltsfield property, built first from 1851, has been redeveloped to include an expansive courtyard with stonework reflecting original local paving as well as a water feature, terraces, promenade, and seven Canary Island palm trees.

Throughout the Cellar Door, repurposing of Mintaro slate, most of which from Seppeltsfield’s 1888 gravity Cellar, has been expertly entwined to the original bottling hall architecture. Highlighted as wall features, fire place surrounds and stair treads, the slate has been complemented by Bluestone, ornate brick window arching and priceless Oregon and Jarrah timbers, all of which have been exposed after decades hidden under an inherited paint scheme. Diners can sit directly underneath the world famous centennial collection of Seppeltsfield fortified barrels dating back to 1878.

Dining underneath the fortified barrels

Dining underneath the fortified barrels

Abutting the new Cellar Door and in a coup for the Barossa’s burgeoning culinary scene is FINO At Seppeltsfield – David Swain and Sharon Romeo’s new restaurant undertaking, as a complement to their original (and highly awarded) Willunga venue.

Fino at Seppeltsfield

Fino at Seppeltsfield

A wine list punctuated with Seppeltsfield’s best of the best, but also broad in local and international selections, will work in synergy with a contemporary cocktail list. Sherry cocktails are a speciality, as is a weekly-topped barrel of Seppeltsfield Fino Sherry (Dry Flor Apera), allowing for fresh off-flor glass pours daily.

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Margaret River Gourmet Escape 2014

Margaret River Gourmet Escape, is a huge weekend and a great opportunity for lovers of food, wine, music and fun to explore the offerings of the region.

Margaret River Gourmet Escape

Leeuwin Estate (image supplied)

At the heart of the Margaret River Gourmet Escape festival is the must see Gourmet Village. A buzzing world of culinary excitement and the perfect opportunity to experience the delectable delights the region has to offer.

Hosted at Leeuwin Estate Winery from 11am-5.30pm on Saturday 22nd and 11am-5pm on Sunday 23rd November, it’s where all our stars come together across one action packed weekend program filled with cooking demonstrations, wine tastings, masterclasses, intimate Q&A’s and panel discussions.

For more information see Gourmet Escape. 

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Segway Sensation Comes To Seppeltsfield

Seppeltsfield has partnered with local South Australian business, Segway Sensation SA, to bring Segway tours to the estate from 1st November this year. The partnership will initially see Segway tours offered three times daily on weekends and public holidays, where guests are guided on a one hour trail throughout the Seppeltsfield estate grounds and vineyards.

Segway Vineyard Tours

Segway tours in the Vineyard (image supplied)

The winery will be the first in South Australia to offer Segway tours to the public. The battery-operated, two-wheeled, personal transportation vehicles have become popular in recent years with tourism sites and city commuters, whereby users can command movement by simply shifting their weight forward or backward on a platform. The US built Segways rely on dynamic stabilisation, whereby advanced sensing enables a safe a smooth ride for even first time users. The partnership comes as a complement to the redevelopment of Seppeltsfield’s Cellar Door, incoming FINO restaurant and the current JamFactory Art & Design Studios, all of which have been added to the property to build a critical mass of tourism interests.

Segway Sensation SA owners, Cindy Chynoweth and Shane Camilleri, said bringing Segways to Seppeltsfield was a fantastic opportunity. “Having discussed the concept with several tourism bodies, we were enthused at the prospect of being based at Seppeltsfield”, said Cindy. “The estate is breathtakingly beautiful – from gorgeous gardens, palm lined roads, heritage buildings and ancient vineyard, it seems perfect for discovery by Segway”, she added.

Seppeltsfield and Segway Sensation SA will be launching their tours on Saturday 1st November. Public are able to select from a 1 hour Segway tour at $99 or a package which includes lunch at the estate’s picnic grounds for $127.

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Tasmania – ‘wild and dramatic, cultured and quirky, isolated yet accessible.’

When the world’s most trusted travel publisher as internationally announced that Tassie is ‘ripe for the picking’.  Lonely Planet named Tasmania one of the world’s top regions to visit in 2015 – the only destination in Australia or New Zealand to make the list.

Naming Tasmania as number four in the “Top 10 Regions in the World to Visit in 2015″ in their Best in Travel 2015 publication, Lonely Planet says ‘the Tassie food scene is a gourmet’s paradise, best exemplified by the diversity of produce found in the wilds of Bruny Island. Whether it’s getting a frisky fill of oysters at Get Shucked Oyster Farm, downing a few glasses of pinot noir at Australia’s most southern winery, or gorging on freshly picked berries from the local berry farm, there’s no better place to taste Tassie on a plate.

Bruny Island Oysters (Image supplied by Tourism Tasmania)

Bruny Island Oysters (Image supplied by Tourism Tasmania)

“There’s a spotlight shining on Tassie at the moment, and it’s only going to get brighter following this latest announcement by Lonely Planet” said John Fitzgerald, CEO of Tourism Tasmania. “Tassie has always had so much to offer visitors who journey to Australia’s island state, and the latest accolade from Lonely Planet cements our place globally as a destination of world-class natural, cultural, heritage and gourmet experiences, all within easy reach of each other.”

Tasmania is rapidly losing its long held status as one of Australia’s ‘hidden gems’. Visitors are lured by an island which epitomises some of the key strengths of Australia’s international appeal – raw, unspoilt natural beauty and incredible fresh food, wine and culinary experiences.

Tourism Australia’s latest global food and wine campaign – Restaurant Australia – culminates in Tasmania next month, with a gala dinner at MONA for 80 of the world’s most influential food and wine figures.

But it’s not only the flavours that feature. Lonely Planet encourages travellers to ‘descend the spiralled staircase of Hobart’s uber-trendy subterranean MONA,’ applauds Tasmania’s wilds, and highlights the much anticipated opening of Australia’s premier coastal bushwalking experience, the Three Capes Track.  Tasmania’s regions are also acclaimed, with the Tarkine, Cradle Mountain, Bay of Fires and Franklin River among the ‘diverse, remote and wild outdoor experiences’ highlighted by Lonely Planet.

For more information on Tasmania, visit  www.discovertasmania.com.au.

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2013 Dodgy Brothers Shiraz: Tasting Note

The 2013 Dodgy Brothers Shiraz definitely tells you it is Shiraz on the nose.  Good intensity, sweet ripe dark fruit, rare meat, and some raspberry liquorice component.  Suggestions of lavender, and red currant jelly keeps it interesting.

Dodgy Brothers of McLaren Vale

Dodgy Brothers of McLaren Vale

On the palate the Dodgy Brother Shiraz is soft and supple, ripe plums and crack black pepper – all the usual suspects in McLaren Vale Shiraz.  While the colour looks dense and solid purple, and being full bodied, the tannins are still supple and opulent.  I could see it complementing a wide range of foods (especially BBQ) or also just drinking it by itself.

As it says on the label; “cellar for up to 10 years – or drink tomorrow.”

Also check out the Dodgy Brothers 2013 GSM.

RRP $28
Alc 14.5%
Region: McLaren Vale
Source: Provided by producer

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