Friday, October 28, 2011

Fiano, Fiano, Where For Art Thou Fiano

I was immediately enchanted to discovere Fiano through a couple of McLaren Vale producers a few years ago. It was different, it was interesting, it had my attention. It wasn’t a fruit bomb wine, had loads of texture and complemented much of the food we have around South Australia. It was also something new for our winelists. It was something we had been longing for.

Fiano originates from the Campania region east of Naples in Italy. So immediately I think of light fresh seafoods, sometimes richer dishes such as (seafood) risotto, or richer poultry dishes. Generally it has a nutty, herbal, characters which I just remember as pesto; ie pinenuts, basil, parmesan cheese. It can be quite aromatic, and sometimes with smoky spicy notes. It naturally retains its acid and so should work well in the warmer South Australian regions, where other varieties lose acid quickly.

I recently had the opportunity to try the 2011 Coriole Fiano. They had just won the trophy in the McLaren Vale Wine Show, for best White Wine. I have been an admirer of both Coriole’s earlier vintages and the Fiano from nearby Olivers Taranga. Both of which we visit on our McLaren Vale private tours.

The 2011 Coriole Fiano had that distinctive nutty character and lovely citrus floral aroma. On the palate pleasant rounded acidity, but not as much as I would expect from this variety and given the cooler 2011 vintage. Nice and soft moderately full, with a distinctive citrus pith grippy finish. A style just calling out for food to balance the grip. Lovely long fresh finish.

RRP $25
Alc 13%
Sample: Provide by producer.

Around South Australia also look out for these other producers for Fiano.
Olivers Taranga
Ducks in a Row
Fox Gordon
Scott Winemaking
Beach Road

Thursday, October 27, 2011

McLaren Vale Wine Show 2011

McLaren Vale wine show has just been completed for 2011. The three-day show, featured more than 650 wines. Twenty trophies and four highly commended certificates were awarded by the judges, similar to previous years.

The majority were awarded to red wines. International guest judge Lisa Perrotti Brown, from the US, chose the 2010 Shingleback Red Knot Grenache Shiraz Mourvedre as her top pick for the show.

Lisa Perrotti-Brown, said. “It was an incredibly packed week judging at the McLaren Vale wine show. Got a great overview of the recent vintages and the new trends for this region. A lot of exciting new grape varieties are emerging with less emphasis on vines that clearly can't excel in this region (eg Sauvignon Blanc) and increased plantings of warmer climate / more expressive grapes such as Fiano, Vermentino, Grenache and Mataro.

The Bushing King - the region’s best wine maker was Steve Pannell from SC Pannell.

McLaren Vale Wine Show winners
Best McLaren Vale Chardonnay and blend of:   Highly commended: 2011 Kangarilla Road McLaren Vale Chardonnay
Best McLaren Vale White Wine other:   2011 Coriole Fiano
Best McLaren Vale Rose or Sparkling Wine:   Highly commended: 2011 Mrs Wigley Rose
Best McLaren Vale Shiraz under $25:   2008 Kay Brothers Basket Pressed Shiraz
Best McLaren Vale Shiraz $25 - $50:   2010 Wirra Wirra Woodhenge Shiraz
Best McLaren Vale Shiraz over $50:   2009 III Associates Squid Ink Shiraz
Best McLaren Vale Cabernet Sauvignon:   2010 Battle of Bosworth Cabernet Sauvignon
Best McLaren Vale Grenache:   2010 SC Pannell Grenache
Best McLaren Vale Single Red Varietal Other:   2009 Pertaringa Wines Tannat
Best McLaren Vale Shiraz Predominant Blend:   2010 Fox Creek Shiraz Grenache Mouvedre
Best McLaren Vale Cabernet Predominant Blend:   Highly Commended: 2010 DogRidge THE PUP Cabernet Merlot
Best McLaren Vale Red Blend Other:  2010 SC Pannell Touriga Tempranillo
Best Fortified Wine:  Oliver’s Taranga Vineyards The Banished Fortified
Best McLaren Vale Museum Wine:  2004 Hardys Eileen Hardy Shiraz
McLaren Vale Icon Red Wine:   Chapel Hill Cabernet Sauvignon 2009/2005

Monday, October 10, 2011

Adelaide Hills ‘Spring Whites & Earthly Delights’ Weekend

The Adelaide Hills Wine Region invites you to enjoy beautiful wines and remarkable flavours from the spring garden this year over their ‘Spring Whites and Earthly Delights’ weekend from October 28 to 30 2011.

Held annually, Spring Whites celebrates the beautiful white wine varietals the Adelaide Hills is renowned for, including Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Riesling, Sparkling and Pinot Grigio, to name a few.

The Adelaide Hills is Australia's most vibrant cool climate wine region. With over 90 wine labels and 48 cellar doors. The Adelaide Hills is one of the largest geographical wine regions in Australia, and amongst the most diverse in terms of climate, soil and topography.

This year acclaimed Culinetic chef, Cole Thomas, has embraced the alternative by developing a range of unusual canapés, inspired by often overlooked spring garden ingredients. Including plants sometimes considered as weeds, Cole believes his recipes pair beautifully to bring the tasting notes of white wine to life. “It is invigorating to cast a creative eye over often overlooked produce and see how wonderfully it brings to life the palette and aromas of the unique white varietals of the Adelaide Hills,” he said.

“Pigface succulent, nasturtium and marigold flowers and unusual herbs including love lies bleeding and lovage have been selected to create dishes that reflect a beautiful interplay between the spring season and the characteristics of Adelaide Hills white wine. While the unusual ingredients have lent themselves wonderfully to some fabulous spring inspired names including ‘Garden Bloody Mary’, ‘Blooms’ and ‘Bird’s Nest’.”

A sample of the culinary creations, matched with Adelaide Hills Sauvignon Blanc, will be unveiled at the Central Market Spring Whites and Earthly Delights launch event on Friday October 28 from 4:30 – 8:30pm, where VIP passes boasting special offers from the 20 participating wineries will be given to 100 lucky market goers. For further information and to download a brochure for the weekend please visit: