Filed under merlot, NSW Central West, pinot noir


David Ellis

DIG this one from New Zealand’s
1860s gold rush country – particularly
with veal cutlets and roast vegetables.

BACK in the 1860s thousands of hopefuls rushed to New Zealand’s Otago region as the cry of “Gold!” rang out across the South Island countryside – and today, 150 years on, there’s a new “gold rush” going-on in the region.

But this time it’s for the wines from vineyards that many consider impossibly steep and rocky, and in particular Pinot Noir that’s winning gold at shows and judging from vines that seem to revel in these toughest conditions.

One maker, Essenze Wines has just released here its 2010 Regional Central Otago Pinot Noir from fruit that winemaker Corey Ryan chose from a scattering of vineyards to give diverse flavours from diverse ripening times.

“Bendigo is the warmest region,” he says, “giving rich, full-flavoured fruit, while Northburn Station’s organically-run vineyards produce fruit with a touch of typical Central Otago thyme, and a half dozen others even further south give later-ripening fruit with differing but wonderful red-fruit and floral characters.”

It all makes for a great drop, particularly at $19.99, whose overall red cherry and plum characters make it a nice choice with veal cutlets and roast vegies.

WINEMAKER’s choice from 2009
for this winter’s roast chicken
with Mediterranean vegies
… or simply a beef stew.

ONE FOR LUNCH: WITH winter now on us, a great combination for a family or friends’ Sunday lunch is Logan Wines’ Weemala 2009 Merlot, teamed with roast chicken and Mediterranean vegetables, or a simple hearty beef stew.

This wine from Mudgee in the NSW Central Ranges, is one of those brooding reds to enjoy right now, or to put away in a cool dark spot for anything up to five years of so to brood to its heart content over its rich berry-fruit flavours that are paired with tobacco, violet, black olive and chocolate characters.

At just $18 you’ll realise why winemaker, Peter Logan says it’s shaping as his favourite from 2009 for this year’s cold-weather dining enjoyment.


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