Cheap wines, Halliday riesling, wonderful mind of Max Crus, 31 May, Matilda Dixon-Smith

If you, like us, jump on any opportunity to validate your cheapo ways, you probably heard the recent news about Aldi. The iconically odd supermarket chain has been making headlines after one of its $8 rosés was named among the best wines in the world.

This is not totally surprising! It’s not the first time Aldi’s picked up a swag of awards for their discount drops and a bunch of studies have previously indicated that, when it comes to wine, price does not always equal quality. As it turns out, the cheap wines can often be just as tasty as the super spenny ones you see on the higher shelves in the bottle-o. Full article

Grape Expectations 29 April 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)

Great article well worth a read:

Life is full of it.

Isn’t it funny how the little things in life can provide sustenance way beyond their nominal value? Like the joy of a good coat hanger.

The delight you feel when you don’t have to iron a shirt.

Finding the right sized bulldog clip when you need it.

Finding a long forgotten $20 note in your shirt pocket. Finding a long forgotten $50 note in your shirt pocket. Alas you never find $100 notes there, criminals and black market tradies have snaffled them all up.

Actually, a lot of forgotten stuff has special appeal, like a forgotten Golden Gaytime in the freezer. How good is that?

The simple pleasure you feel when you discover the dishwasher has been emptied by another householder…actually, that’s never happened, but I am sure I would enjoy it.

The joy of a fresh, tough sudoku, the greater joy at solving it.

How good is a sleep-in? Specially the kind you have when you wake up thinking it’s Friday and discover it’s actually Sunday…where did Saturday get to?

The smell of a bakery in the morning, specially when they’ve just done the sweet pastries. Okay you can buy candles for that sort of thing, but it’s just not the same, and not only because you can’t eat them.

The smell of a new car, although the gloss has been lost a bit on that one since scientists discovered it was the actually the smell of ‘rotting’ plastic and highly carcinogenic.

The joy of science discovering something good for a change, and that you can buy that smell in a spray can…but it’s just not the same.

Then there’s a string of good things that only come when you’re full of it, such as a full tank of petrol.

A fully charged phone or iPad. A phone or iPad that works.

A full latte, just the right temperature and without burning the milk like they do in roadhouse cafes.

A full packet of biscuits to go with the above.

A full bottle of wine. A full bottle of fabulous wine.

Taylors St Andrews Clare Valley Riesling 2016, $40. St Andrew, the patron saint of riesling, would be well pleased with himself as would be his boss, God, presumably, for whipping up something like this. 9.2/10.

Taylors St Andrews Single Vineyard Release Clare Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2014, $70. I think St Andrew is also the patron saint of golf, and maybe cabernet too, which begs the question how many things can one be patron of? Whatever, this is saintly cabernet. 9.2/10.

Chandon Vintage Brut 2013, $41. What makes this $2 more than its rosé sister? Did they have to remove the roses? Or is it like unleaded petrol? When that first came out it cost more than leaded, yet the lead wasn’t removed…it wasn’t there in the first place. 8.9/10.

Chandon Vintage Brut Rosé 2013, $39. Co-incidentally this is the colour of unleaded fuel, but mercifully smells much better and tastes far superior to many other bubbles let alone petrol, not that I would know. 8.7/10.

(Byrne Vineyards) City of Lights Moscato, NV, $18. The smell is quite pinot, or is it gewurz, or is it moscato? With a taste as captivating as the smell and it’s low-ish alcohol, why isn’t this the ‘IT’ wine? 9/10.

(Byrne Vineyards) Aussarone Vine Dried ‘100 Bats’ Shiraz, $25. Most Australianised things just give me the pip, but this Aussified amarone can call itself whatever it likes. It’s wildly labelled, wildly fruity, like many Aussies, and scrumptious. 9.2/10.

The Australian, 27 May, James Halliday

Halliday on Australian riesling, three wines reviewed, full article

2016 Castle Rock Estate A & W Reserve Porongurup Riesling. From WA’s Great Southern region, this is a wine of crystal clarity in every way, marrying elegance with power as it unfolds. Lime and slatey acidity are intertwined on the exceptionally long and pure palate. Few ’16 rieslings could point to the future as convincingly. 11.5% alc, screwcap, 97 points, drink to 2036, $35

2016 Seppelt Drumborg Vineyard Riesling. This has it all, bringing finesse and luxuriant varietal character onto the table at the first sniff and taste. It is literally loaded with power in the fashion of a fine, dry Rheingau riesling. It is utterly irresistible now, and will become even more so with extended cellaring. 11% alc, screwcap, 97 points, drink to 2036, $40

2016 Stargazer Coal River Valley Riesling. This wine from a small producer in southern Tasmania is fermented in stainless steel, old oak and a ceramic egg. The complex vinification has worked perfectly — it has intense lime juice and lime zest flavours, but even more striking is the opulent juiciness of the mouthfeel before the cleansing acidity on the finish. 12% alc, screwcap, 97 points, drink to 2031, $35

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