Windowrie 2013 The Mill Cabernet Merlot
The O’Dea family, based at Canowindra with a cellar door at Cowra, sourced some excellent fruit from the Hilltops region near Young to craft this stylish and very affordable blend of cabernet sauvignon and merlot. You’ll find bright berry fruit characters, hints of earthiness and well-integrated oak in a wine that is seamless and offers a lot of food-friendly pleasure for a very reasonable price tag. Pair this with anything from souvlaki to sausages. $18.
Pretty and pink(ish)
Rob Dolan 2013 Pinot Gris
Veteran winemaker Rob Dolan makes an impressive range of Yarra Valley wines but this one catches the eye with its point of difference; it’s a pinot gris that is almost rosé in colour with unusual, but very appealing, aromas he describes as “rose petals, melons and guava”. From a warm year, this is an assertive gris with fresh and savoury notes that was partially barrel fermented and then aged in barriques for nine months. Despite the work in the winery, however, it is the quality fruit that shines. $28.
Tatachilla 2013 McLaren Vale Shiraz
Good work here from Jeremy Ottawa, who made this wine while in a caretaker role but has since taken over as chief winemaker at Tatachilla in McLaren Vale after over a decade working at St Hallett. There is a lot to like about this plush, rich red with a violet, peppery nose that continues on to a fruit-driven palate with dark berry, mocha and liquorice notes. This is a big wine, but everything about it is impressively manicured. $19.