The holiday period is almost upon us so here wine writer Winsor Dobbin has selected some outstanding wines for enjoying over the Christmas and New Year break.
Alkoomi 2018 White Label Sauvignon Blanc
How do they produce such good wines in this range for just $15? I have no idea, but if you are looking for a fresh, crisp, all-purpose white wine for summer party enjoyment you can’t go past this vibrant West Australian. $15.
Wickhams Road 2018 Yarra Valley Pinot Noir
This is the entry level label from highly-rated Yarra Valley producer Hoddles Creek and probably the best-value pinot noir you’ll find in Australia. It’s a juicy, fruit-forward style for immediate enjoyment and a terrific partner for a glazed ham. $20.
Thorn Clarke 2018 Sandpiper Chardonnay
You don’t find many chardonnays this stylish for under $20. This is razor-sharp on trend with cool-climate fruit from the Eden Valley producing a wine that has plenty of flavour but is also refined and delicate. Great with party canapes.$20.
Jacob’s Creek 2017 Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon
This is a very good red at a lower price point; with ripe, dark blackberry characters from Limestone Coast fruit – and impressive structure. The recommended retail price is $17.99 but I’ve seen it on special for several dollars cheaper. $16.
Knappstein 2018 Clare Valley Riesling
A classic Clare Valley Riesling that finishes dry with plenty of zingy lemon and lime acidity on the palate. This is both refreshing and elegant and would be an ideal budget partner for matching with seafood, particularly fresh oysters. $19.
Champagne Duperrey Premier Cru Brut
Real Champagne for under $40 a bottle represents seriously good buying – and Dan Murphy’s are currently selling this for under $40 – a great price for quality sparkling with citrus, white peach notes, along with a flinty, racy finish. $39.99.
Taylor Made 2015 BDX
A lip-smacking blend of cabernet sauvignon, merlot, malbec and cabernet franc from the Clare Valley that pays tribute to the great red blends of Bordeaux. Dark, dusty and intense, this offers layers of complex flavours. Pair with a cheese platter. $26.
Irvine 2018 Spring Hill Eden Valley Primitivo Rosé
Nothing says summer better than a crisp, dry rosé. Made from primitivo, which is more usually referred to as zinfandel in Australia, this is a suave dry and savoury rosé from the Eden Valley that is lifted and fragrant and very European in style.$22.
DAOSA NV Natural Reserve
This stellar bubbly is produced from Piccadilly (Adelaide Hills) fruit, including some reserve material, and spends 18 months in bottle before being disgorged with a low dosage. It is 85% pinot noir/15% chardonnay. Dry, refreshing, long, elegant and delicious. $40.
La Prova Brusco 2015 Nebbiolo
A little taste of Italy in a glass. Sam Scott specialises in Italian grape varieties grown in South Australia and this nebbiolo made from Adelaide Hills fruit is right in the zone with a clever balance of bright red fruit and savoury characters. Pair with appetisers. $45.
Mount Pleasant 2017 Old Paddock and Old Hill Shiraz
The 2017 shirazes from the Hunter Valley are looking superb and this old-vine offering from the McWilliams family is right on point with dark berry fruit flavours and complexity on the palate. Ideal for pairing with red meat dishes. $50.
Stargazer 2017 Tasmania Chardonnay
The very talented Samantha Connew is making some outstanding wines under her Stargazer label in Tasmania and this Coal Valley chardonnay is drinking superbly well on release with beautiful cool-climate balance. A chardonnay that resonates. $50.
d’Arenberg 2016 The Dead Arm Shiraz
Here’s a wine for lovers of big, bold quintessentially Australian red wines, hand-crafted by one of the great names from McLaren Vale (the Osborn family has over a century in the wine industry). Seriously delicious and designed for savouring. $75.
Cullen 2017 Kevin John Chardonnay
High-quality chardonnay is a perfect match for the holiday roast turkey – and they don’t come much better than this organic and biodynamic wine from Margaret River’s Vanya Cullen. With elegance and purity this an Australian benchmark. $127.
Ten Minutes by Tractor 2016 Estate Pinot Noir
This outstanding Mornington Peninsula producer releases a stellar range of individual wines, but the estate release also shone in 2016; a dry, warm vintage that produced wines with style and personality. Pair with cold cuts. $48.
Penfolds St Henri 2015 Shiraz
The St Henri is a red wine you can enjoy immediately, although it is also proven to cellar well. This is the serious-but-fun wine in the Penfolds’ line-up; a fruit-driven style that calls on grapes sourced from all over South Australia. Seriously good. $135
See more from Winsor Dobbin at www.gourmetontheroad.blogspot.com