We have four trios this week. Before the reviews, news from the UK: Berton Vineyard Botrytis Semillon, sold by Aldi, has been awarded gold at the International Wine and Spirits Competition. It retails there for £6 ($9.73) a half bottle, which is incredibly cheap. In Australia it can be found for $17. So the first trio is in fact a quartet.
Berton Vineyard Riverina Botrytis Semillon 2015: A light style but balanced all along the journey. 93 points and $17 for a half bottle is very good value.
The trio is from Berton’s Metal range. It’s a sauvignon blanc, a vermentino and a viognier, all from the 2016 vintage and carrying a retail price of $12.
The sauvignon fruit comes from Padthaway and it’s an OK white wine for its price, 89 points.
The vermentino source is split between the Riverland and the Riverina. This is one very enjoyable glass of wine, with a mix of fruit flavours. Some are ripe, others more restrained, but all kept in line with good acid balance. 93 points and outstanding value.
The viognier hails from the Riverina. It’s clean and balanced. The flavours are classic, including apricot. It slithers across the palate then slips away, giving pleasure all the way. 94 points and a bargain.
The Mitolo trio consists of a senior member and two younger siblings. All wines come from the McLaren Vale region.
The ‘Cantiniere’ Shiraz 2014 is the senior and deserves gravitas. The nose starts way before close contact. It lifts from the glass at arm’s length. It’s not yeasty, nor is it bacon frying, but the effect it has is like the aroma of bacon, or freshly baked bread. With the expectation of pleasure already set high, the journey has to be special, and it is. Spice, ripe black fruits and a hint of savoury all entwine to please the drinker. 96 points and for those that have it, $68 is a fair price.
The Mitolo Jester wines are from the 2016 vintage and carry a retail price of $22. The vermentino is delicious, refreshing and crisp. It satisfies from beginning to end, and gets an easy 93 points.
The sangiovese rosé is rather naughty. It starts lightly, tripping around the point of the tongue in a vibrant, easy way. By the middle it’s showing more savoury, deeper flavours, and on the end it’s become quite a serious wine. 94 points. Both wines are value for money.
The Hungerford Hill trio could be a sextet, or a duo of trios. This is half the range. The other half will be in future reviews. The three wines below are part of the Underground Project collection of wines, which are sold only online. As an aside, I think the labels are fantastic.
The 2015 Chardonnay is from Tumbarumba. It’s very cool climate, tight in style but not too tight. I think it will fill out a little over the next few months. 93 points and on the pricey side at $35.
The Coonawarra Cabernet Sauvignon 2014 is a well-made classic Coonawarra cabernet. It rates 93 points but $45 is steep.
The Barossa Valley Shiraz 2014 is a beauty, having a seductive nose and the chocolate character for which the Barossa is well known. 94 points and plenty of competition at $40.
The last trio comes from the McLaren Vale-based Inkwell team of Dudley Brown and Irina Santiago-Brown. The DubStyle brand of wines is described as:
“Our winemaking fun zone. Where we apply our purely wild approach to a host of different varieties to make different styles of wine using different techniques. From 100 per cent whole bunch grenache, 100 per cent whole fruit mataro and joven style preservative-free shiraz to slightly sweet and bubbly viognier in a can to low alcohol extended contact versions of chenin blanc and viognier (we call them ‘Tangerine’) and our stream of easy to love remixes of red varieties, DubStyle is magic carpet ride of new sensory experiences unlike any other.”
The Dub trio reviewed here consists of a McLaren Vale Mataro and a McLaren Vale Shiraz, both retailing at $25. There is also the 2016 No.1 Bubbly, which is unfortunately sold out, but worth reporting on as it comes in a 375ml can and is a slightly sweet viognier.
The can retails for $12 and I can see it being a success as the wine is good, tasty and balanced, and the packaging is fun. 93 points and value.
The shiraz is sound wine – can’t say anything against it – but it didn’t excite. 92 points. The big point going for it is that it is preservative free. For those seeking these wines it’s worth $25.
The mataro did excite. It has a complex array of flavours with good textual feel all along the journey. 94 points and well worth $25.