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David Ellis

COOL idea for bubbly celebrations.

WHEN one of our most respected sparkling winemakers sums up a vintage in just one word – fantastic – you can expect a bubbly from that year to be nothing other than, well, fantastic.

And that’s the case with Chandon’s Tasmanian Cuvée 2008, a celebration drop that the company’s Sparkling Winemaker, Glenn Thompson can quite rightly describe as “a sensational blend of vibrancy, complexity and intensity.”

Made up of 48 per cent  Pinot Noir and 52 per cent Chardonnay from the cool-climate Coal River Valley south-east of Hobart, this sparkling reflects just what comprised that “fantastic” vintage – a perfect growing season followed by a long, slow and cool ripening period that meant for wonderful flavour development and beautiful natural acidity.

Add to all this Glenn Thompson and his team’s skills in the winery and you’ve a wine with a silky palate of brioche and toast from extended yeast aging, and which melds with lush fruits and a backbone of fresh acidity and minerality. At $39.95 you’ll find it ideal with that next celebration brunch.

VALUE enjoyment with Asian dishes
or lighter Southern Italian pastas.

ONE FOR LUNCH: WITH some of the toughest conditions in New Zealand’s Marlborough – steep slopes that many said were impossible for viticulture, high sunshine, strong winds, cool nights and low rainfall – you’d wonder why Peter Yealands even bothered.

But with determination and a great winemaker in Tamra Washington he’s created some extraordinarily good wines, not the least his just-released Yealands Way 2011 Pinot Gris. Remarkably this variety actually flourishes in those harsh conditions we’ve mentioned, and the 2011 is full of stone fruit and honey flavours, and nicely-balanced fruit smoothness and acidity.

At $17.99 it’s great value with Asian dishes or lighter Southern Italian pastas.


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