Articles reviews from Hooke, Crus, Bonné and more

Grape Expectations 13 November Max Crus (Simon Hughes)

At some point in the week these reviews and article will appear in The Daily Examiner (Grafton), Border Mail (Albury), Rotary Down Under (National) and Australian Petroleum Marketer News (National) 

Reviews for

Stanton and Killeen Rutherglen Moscato 2016, $15. Afraid of moscato and your reputation should you be seen drinking it? Then give it to me. Amazingly refreshing, 7 per cent alcohol, slightly sweet but finishes dry, and alluringly pink to attract sensitive types. 9/10.

Stanton and Killeen Rutherglen Rose (tinta barroca, tinta roriz, tinta cao), 2016, $22. This has more tinta than a panel beater, and it’s serious red colour is a fab match for a fast car. Don’t drink and drive. 8.4/10.

Koomilya (McLaren Vale) DC Block Shiraz 2013, $110. You say tomato I say Koomilya. But is that koo–mill-ya, koo-millia, koo-mile-ya…the permutations for the word for the Port Lincoln indigenous word for ‘woman’ are endless, unless you speak the language. Rolls off the tongue beautifully as does the wine. Rich in history and character. 9.1/10.

Koomilya (McLaren Vale) Shiraz 2014, $70. The woolshed bold font is great, incredibly easy to identify from a distance, which you will appreciate if you spend $70 on a wine. 9/10.

Holly’s Garden Überbrut NV #5a (Methode Traditionelle) $28. The umlaut, the uber and the hashtag 5a are quirky and will attract Arian types and bubbly types. Es ist gut. 8.8/10.

Holly’s Garden Pinot Gris 2015, $28. Refreshingly free of rubbish other than the maker, contents and vintage, but it also sports a child’s drawing, a la doting parents’ fridges, but 3 out of four ain’t bad, and it’s equally refreshing as a wine. 8.7/10.

The Real Review, 10 November, Huon Hook

How John Casella got his big break

It all started with a wrong number phone call, a call that he shouldn’t have even answered.

John Casella, managing director and proprietor of Australia’s second-biggest wine company, recently told me how he first began dealing in wine, which led to the creation of Yellow Tail and the tearaway international success of the Yellow Tail brand. Full article 

Punch, 9 November, Jon Bonné

Australian Wine’s Return to Cool

After a swift rise and plateau, Australia is emerging as a hotbed for wine’s avant-garde. In part one of Jon Bonné’s two-part journey through the New Australia, he visits the region that’s become its focal point: the Adelaide Hills. Full article 

Money Week, 11 November, Matthew Jukes

I published my notes for the Penfolds Collection brand-new releases (free to view on my website) the other day and this prompted me to look back at the current crop of Penfolds wines that are out and about in the market. The star, as always, is Bin 389 – a perfect amalgam of cabernet sauvignon and shiraz grapes, and a stunning example of The Great Australian Red (TGAR) blend. Full article 

Palm Beach Illustrated, 12 November, Mark Spivak


The inside story of Australian wine is a heartbreaking tale of boom and bust. Veterans still shake their heads over “The Great Vine Pull of 1987.” After five years of uncontrolled surpluses, the government actually paid growers to remove Shiraz vines and leave their land barren. The result was the loss of thousands of acres of the best old-vine Shiraz.

The industry recovered and another boom ensued, only to come crashing down in the recession of 2007-2008. Then a strong surge in the value of the Aussie dollar made entry-level wines such as Yellow Tail no longer seem like appealing bargains. To make matters worse, consumers moved toward a preference for a cleaner, more natural style of wine, which further weakened the appeal of Barossa’s high-alcohol, overripe, and heavily oaked reds. Full Article 

Bwog, Columba Student News, 7 November, Staff reporting

In this week’s instalment of Wine & Cheez, it’s time for a selection that is heavier to warm you up during the colder weather. As we approach yet another break and reel from recent developments, Yellow Tail’s Chardonnay is the best way to get some premature R&R and decompress. Full article

The Mercury (Tasmania), 12 & 15 November, Graeme Phillip



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