Explore some affordable recent releases and a special treat, as recommended by wine critic Winsor Dobbin.
Calneggia Prosecco Rosé
This Prosecco Rosé DOC is one of the first to be released in Australia since the Italian Government gave the go ahead for pink prosecco production in May 2020. Made for the Calneggia family in Italy, this is a blend of 85% glera and 15% pinot noir. It has a very pretty colour with floral aromas, nice mousse, and hints of red fruit – same family but different to traditional prosecco. Food friendly and great as an aperitif. Try Liquourland or First Choice stores. $30.
Penfolds 2018 St Henri
With Father’s Day just around the corner you might want to consider at bottle of this as a present for any wine-loving Dad. Part of the new-release Penfolds Collection but without the hefty Grange price tag, this is made from 100% shiraz. It’s all about the fruit here; dark, delicious and immediately accessible. Soft, supple and seductive, I gave it a score of 99 points. $135.
Carillion 2021 ‘Lovable Rogue’ Fiano
Looking for a perfect partner for some spicy Asian dishes? Look now further. Made from the Italian grape fiano and grown at the Tallaverra Grove vineyard in the Hunter Valley, this has been crafted as a slightly ‘off-dry’ style, with five grams per litre residual sugar. That hint of sweetness would be a perfect foil for some chilli spice from Thailand or Malaysia. This is appealing aromatic with thirst-quenching acidity on the finish. $30.
De Iuliis 2019 Shiraz
The de Iuliis family are among the quiet achievers in the Hunter Valley, making a range of excellent wines at very reasonable prices. This shiraz is a case in point, with plenty of flavour for a minimal investment. Think traditional Hunter shiraz but softer, smoother and with spicy and earthy characters playing a support role to the luminous fruit. This is drinking very well in its youth. $25.
Sandalford 2020 Chenin Blanc
Sandalford is based in the Swan Valley, outside Perth, and the fruit for this lovely white is grown on the estate, which has a history dating back over 180 years. Chenin Blanc is one of the star varieties of France’s Loire Valley and South Africa but is criminally under-rated in Australia. The 1840 range is named for the year Sandalford’s founder, John Septimus Roe, established the winery. Crisp and clean with Granny Smithy apple characters and dangerously easy to quaff. $30.
Mt Bera 2018 Wild & Free Pinot Noir
Adelaide Hills winery Mt Bera is a new name for me, but my first tastings of both the 17 and 18 pinot noirs impressed – and you can’t argue with $30 for a bottle of quality pinot, particularly as Mt Bera produces only single vineyard and estate-grown wines. The winery focuses on regenerative viticulture, using organic and biodynamic practices. This has a melange of dark berry and Asian spice characters and would work well with most poultry dishes. Distributed by Single Vineyard Sellers. $30.
See Winsor’s work at www.gourmetontheroad.com.