It’s a misleading heading (sorry) as its not sweet rose wine reviews but a mix of sweet and rose wines.
Auburn Hills Clare Valley Rose 2016: Part of the Mitchell family of wines this is the first rose under this banner. A deceptive wine, as on entry its very soft and gentle, cute as a tiger snoozing but don’t poke sleeping tigers with sharp sticks. This wine comes awake shortly after starting its journey and its lively, it rolls and tumbles over the palate delighting all the way 93 points and good value at $20
Paxton McLaren Vale Shiraz Rose 2016: It’s strong in flavour but not in alcohol just 12.5% It’s what I consider to be good honest wine, the sort that can be drunk with joy out of tumblers at a big family and friends lunch, believe me that is a big plus 92 points value at $20
La Bise Adelaide Hills Rose 2016: Intriguing nose not sweet fruit but not savoury, I could say strawberry but I won’t as Its often a fall back for writers. I think bloggers/reviewers/wineries overuse strawberry when it comes to rose wines. Anyhow back to me and the struggle to pin the nose, I can’t so let’s move on. It’s an adult rose, dry with flavours that have a savoury edge, it spreads out in the middle of the palate bringing life to the parts it touches, good acid makes it very food friendly 93 points well worth $22
Moving on to the sweeties
Geoff Hardy ‘GMH’ South Eastern Australia Noble Sweet White 2013: Made with semillon from different vineyards, I’m such a sucker for botrytis affected semillon I find it hard not to give any of them less than 110 and that’s just on the nose. I do manage to calm my enthusiasm enough to give honest assessment, this is a good nose candied apricot with just a hint of spice, soft across the palate the acid merging in with the fruit, bringing the wine to a gentle end, perhaps too gentle 93 points around the right price at $18 half bottle
Geoff Hardy ‘GMH’ South Eastern Australia Noble Sweet White 2016: Classic nose, good acid fruit balance makes come alive across the palate it will age but it is drinking beautifully now and with good blue cheese is wonderful 95 points good value at $18 half bottle
Gapsted Wines ‘Mountain Gold’ King Valley Late Harvest Semillon 2009: I tasted this chilled but if I was drinking it I would add ice the intensity is quite something. Letting it slowly warm in the mouth brings forth a greater array of flavour than just twice around the gums and in the spit bucket. It really is one gorgeous wine 95 points and around $19 half bottle is value
Scotchmans Hill Bellarine Peninsula Late Harvest Riesling 2016: Sweet riesling is a different creature to sweet semillon and in the main more age helps. Each stage of this wine is just what it should be at this stage of its life, but it’s a child, no it’s a baby so 93 for being correct at this stage, leaving seven more points that can be added as each part melds into its companions, the question to ponder is how many of the seven will it get towards perfection? Good price $25 half bottle
There is not a lot I miss about living in the UK but one aspect is my exposure to a wider range of wines then I get in Australia. This manifests itself when looking at value for money. Despite taxation wine in Australia is cheap. We get incredible value for money at the value end (wine under $20) and in all price sectors. The wines reviewed below are in Australian terms at the pointy end yet in global terms are cheap.
The Redman Coonawarra 2006: A cabernet-shiraz-merlot blend of the best parcels the winemaking team identifies. Skill time and patience have gone into this wine and it’s all been worthwhile, the nose is a pure delight of black ripe fruits tinged with cedar and old leather the palate is opulent and very classy from start to finish, 97 points and well worth $70
Shingleback ‘D Block’ McLaren Vale Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon 2013: A deep dark brooding wine it’s the black magic box of hidden smells and tastes. I say hidden because they are waiting to emerge, at this stage there are only hints, it’s a marvellous wine to taste as it allows only a glimpse of what is yet to come, 94 now but I think another two down the line, it’s worth the $55 asked
Yangarra ‘Ironheart’ McLaren Vale Shiraz 2014: Like a black hole in space it absorbs all the light it’s the darkest and deepest red/black from centre to rim, looking into it is mediative or can be if one gives the wine the time it deserves. The nose is lighter than one expects from Vale shiraz, there are feral notes a greater smell of earth and vine, some oak comes through on the palate but it’s not intrusive the wine stumbles across and around the palate only because it’s not come together, but it will marry and be beautiful, then it will be worth the $105 asked, so if within your budget buy and put aside for a few years and reap the reward 94 now more to come
Yangarra ‘High Sands’ McLaren Vale Grenache 2014: Sometimes, not often a wine reaches out of the glass and takes charge, this is such a wine, its playful as it temps and caresses and impresses and is in turn light yet suddenly shows a serious side there is depth and length that is very impressive, 94 now with a couple more to come $140 is pricy but not outrageous
Mount Avoca ‘Back Block’ Victoria Shiraz 2014: Pure seduction on the nose the first sniff tells one they are in the presence of a very good wine, nor does it in any way disappoint on the palate a long slow ripple of flavour, the pleasure of a silk stocking rolling down a very sharply leg, 96 points well worth $48