Perth Wine Century Challenge – Sixth Meet

Hi everyone,

To see what wines we have tried so far you can check out my blog posts on the first (unofficial meet) along with our second,  thirdfourth and fifth meets (official meets). Back in September I caught up with some fellow Perth wine lovers and bloggers for the third official Wine Century Challenge Meet. For those interested in my progress of the Wine Century Challenge I am keeping track of my progress on this page. This sixth meet-up was held at the Bad Apples in Applecross. The Tasting was organised by Stacey from Untapped Fine Wines and comprised of a selection of wines from her portfolio. Notes for the wines are under the categories of eye (E), nose (N) and palate (P) as usual for these tastings. All the noted prices for this tasting are the online prices for Untapped Fine Wines.

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Before beginning the tasting I popped into Bad Apples a little early as I had spent the entire day writing assignments and had not had the chance to have lunch. A bad idea when I had a night of wine drinking ahead of me so I used the opportunity to try out their chicken skewers and sliders. I really liked the sliders and the chicken skewers in comparison did nothing to blow my socks off. My only gripe with the sliders is that it was $16 for the two of them, this places them in the ‘treats’ category unfortunately.

WHITES

Ossain Quintauna, Verdejo, 2011, Spain (RRP $28)

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E: pale, bright lemon yellow.

N: lemon, straw, slightly nutty, melon – a classic verdelho.

P: melon, lemon, peach, slight spritz, unoaked, and possibly a higher alcoholic content from the mouth feel of the wine.

Juan Carlos Sacha ‘Ad Libitum’, Tempranillo Blanco, 2010, Spain. (RRP $48)

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E: pale, bright, yellow lemon.

N: honey, nutty, with a possible floral nose.

P: dry, crisp, clean, and mineral.

This is the first production of this mutation which was performed at this vineyard also. An interesting varietal to have tried but one which would have done significantly better if paired with food and still needs some time for the winemaker to find the best winemaking technique to use with this varietal.

Pazo San Mauro, Albarino, 2010, Spain. (RRP $43)

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E: pale yellow.

N: sweetness, honey and melon – wow nose!

P: crisp, dry, hint of sweetness and possibly a hint of oak also.

Sant Josep Llagrimes de Tardor, Garnacha Blanc, 2009, Spain. (RRP $38)

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E: pale yellow.

N: lots of honey.

P: dry with a slight honey taste.

El Porvenir Laborum, Torrontes, 2012, Argentina. (RRP $35)

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E: clear and bright wine.

N: spicy, tangy, and pear.

P: very dry, good overall finish and mouth feel.

REDS

Catherine & Pierra Breton Chinon, Cabernet Franc, 2010, France. (RRP ~$35)

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E: deep plum.

N:mint.

P:silky tannins, oak, and there was some alcoholic heat at the back of the palate.

Neo Tercer Motivo Bierzo, Mencia, 2008, Spain. (RRP $26)

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E: deep plum.

N:spice and mint.

P:spicy and warm mouth feel.

Aquitania Reserva, Carmenere, 2011, Chile. (RRP $25)

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E: deep ruby red.

N: oak and musty – reminded me of a homestead.

P: warm with a hint of spice.

This wine was a favourite of mine on the night.

Mi Terruno Reserva, Bonarda, 2010, Argentina. (RRP $30)

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E: deep plum/brick red.

N: tobacco with a hint of mint.

P: dry and lots of tannins.

Juan Carlos Sanch ‘A Libitum’, Maturana Tina, 2010, Spain. (RRP $48)

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E: deep plum.

N: this was described as smelling like “sweaty gym socks” by another person on the night and I think it summed it up quite well.

P: not great, short, and mellow.

from discussions with Stacy it seems like this wine’s faults were more due to the wine maker than the grapes. This is a varietal which few wineries are making and therefore those who are making it are in the process of ‘rediscovering’ this varietal.

Mendel ‘Lunta’, Malbec, 2011, Argentina. (RRP $33)

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E: deep plum.

N: warm and hearty.

P: smooth, dry, lots of berries, with a spicy palate that developed towards the end.

This one was a definite favourite at the end of the tasting table I was at. I quite enjoyed it, it was definitely one of my top 3 picks but not the favourite of the night.

Vivanco Collection Parcelas, Graciano, 2007, Spain. (RRP ~$170)

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E: deep violet.

N: spice, plum, cherry and aniseed.

P: warm, smooth, with a very good mouth feel.

I loved this wine! It had so many layers to it and I thoroughly enjoyed it. Then we had the RRP’s given to us and I’d have to say that while I adored this wine on a value-for-money choice I would say the Carmenere was my second favourite and at a comparative RRP of $25 it is the clear winner.

During the later half of the tasting we had a selection of pizzas and chips brought out to us. I only managed a snap of the chips as the pizzas were devoured as soon as they were placed on the table, and I was one of those diving in for a slice or two. Really well presented and tasty pizzas and the chips were as good as last time.

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Perth Wine Group: Third Meet

Hi everyone,

Following on from our first unofficial meet and our second official meet, both at Steve’s Fine Food and Wine in Nedlands comes our third group meet. This time around we met south of the river at Bad Apples in Applecross. I had been meaning for far too long to come and check this place out after all the rave reviews I had read as well as BF having been on a few occasions already and loving it. Alas I had not been able to spare a night before, however my quick sample of their menu and the chance to eye off their wines and bar has made sure that I will be back a lot sooner than it took for me to here the first time. For a review of the food BF and I had while we were at Bad Apples head to the bottom of this blog post.

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Any who, enough about Bad Apples for now and on with the wines! For this meet Perth Wine Enthusiast and Tom (Wine Director at Bad Apples Bar) were in-charge of selecting the wines and even dipped into their own personal cellar for this meet. We ended up with a selection of 1 Rose, 5 Whites, 6 Reds and a fortified for tasting on the night. The atmosphere of the bar was much louder than Steve’s leading to our discussions this time around being much more limited and often isolated to those few around us at our long table.

The notes I made at this tasting were the same as last time, I scribbled down notes under the categories E (eyes: what I saw) N (nose: what I smelt) and P (Palate: what I tasted).

Rose

2012 Express Winemakers ‘Rosado’. Tempranillo (Great Southern) and Grenache (Swan Valley), Australia.

Wine Express Makers, Rosaldo.

I have previously tried this wine from Express Winemakers at Little Creatures, and was not overly impressed with the wine. This time around I had a much larger glass and was able to give it a much better ‘swirl and sniff’ before having a sip and was much more impressed with the slight sweetness of strawberries and cherries I could note on the nose coming through in the palate. The wine came across refreshing and balanced. A good wine to start the evening with.

Whites

2011 Mandoleto Catarratto. Sicily, Italy. [12.5%, RRP ~$15]

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E: vibrant, clear and pale lemon coloured wine in the glass

N: lemon, oak.

P: crisp, dry finish with a sherbet/rice-bubble texture on the tongue – quite an unusual feel.

2010 Benanti Biancodicaselle Bianco. Etna, Sicily, Italy. (100% Carricante) [12.5%, RRP ~$50]

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E: clear pale lemon wine in the glass.

N: lime, floral, light aromatic wine.

P: lime, smooth on the palate, dry finish which I wrote “great” next to.

2012 Vinteloper Pinot Gris. McLaren Vale, Australia. [14%, RRP ~$25]

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E: clear pale lemon wine in the glass.

N: lemon, floral, honey, lees, ‘fresh’ aroma.

P: crisp, dry, alcoholic, mineral, medium bodied – overall an unbalanced wine.

Note: This wine came from vines which were less than 10 years old and from a biodynamic and organic single vineyard.

2004 Rockford Semillon. Barossa Valley, Australia. [11.5%, RRP ~$23]

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E: the wine had a definite yellow tinge however it was still clear in the glass.

N: honey, mandarin, oak, toasty – this wine had a ‘weighty’ and sweet nose to it.

P: toasty, citrus, mandarin – my last note for this wine was ‘yum!’

This wine was top 2 of the whites for me along with the Gewürztraminer below.

2007 Montana “Patutahi” Gewürztraminer. Gisborne, New Zealand. [14%, RRP ~$30]

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E: forgot to record something for this wine…

N: lime, lemon, aromatic, fennel.

P: smooth, warm, medium finish.

Reds

2009 Judge Rock St. Laurent. Central Otago, New Zealand. [13%]

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E: plum coloured clear wine.

N: spicy – oak, plum, warm, inviting – reminded me of a cold winters night in front of a fire.

P: smooth, dry, lots of tannins, oak, spice, leathery.

This wine impressed me and from the people around me got quite a few nods of approval, however the strong tannins makes for this wine to be classed in the ‘with food’ category.

2008 Manso Ribera Del Douro. Spain. (100% Tempranillo) [14%]

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E: ruby red/plum coloured wine in the glass.

N: cherry and spice.

P: rough at the start of the palate, olive oil, bitter, lacked tannins – when tasting this wine I was reminded of Ribena (blackcurrant cordial) and it’s overly sweet taste.

This wine was not well liked by those around me.

2012 Fall From Grace “Mangarita” Montepulciano. McLaren Vale, Australia. [13%]

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E: deep plum coloured wine in the glass.

N: ‘funky’ smelling, Vegimite.

P: vinegar aftertaste at the end of the palate.

This wine lacked fruit on both the nose and palate.

2010 Bodega Mustiguillo, Finca Terrerazo, Vino de pago. El Terrerazo, Spain. (100% Bobal) [14%]

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E: deep plum coloured wine in the glass.

N: leather, spice, undertone of plum, oak lead to toasty/buttery notes.

P: very dry thanks to the tannins in the wine, overall still a very balanced wine.

2011 First Drop Wines “Nacional” Touriga Nacional. McLaren Vale, Australia. [RRP ~$25-30]Screen Shot 2013-04-01 at 6.36.13 PM

E: clear, plum coloured wine in the glass.

N: leather, spice, plum and oak.

P: smooth, creamy textured, warming, low in tannins.

This wine and the following were both excellent wines in their own merits. This first one was a perfect wine to drink on it’s own or would go excellently with some cheese personally. The following wine was not only twice the price but also packed twice the punch and was a delicious wine that made me crave a good steak to go with it.

2010 Bodegas Aralaya Almansa Alaya. Castilla-La Mancha, Spain. (100% Alicante Bouschet) [RRP ~$50-60]

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E: deep plum coloured wine in the glass.

N: leather and spice.

P: plum, dry, smooth, tannins, medium finish, warm, oak, decent body, fleshy.

Fortified

Dandelions Vineyard, Legacy of the Barossa, 30 year old Pedro Ximenez. Barossa, Australia.

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I have come across this winery before in the past and I was yet again impressed with their wines. I was first introduced to Dandelions Vineyard at the Rose Revolution last year. This fortified wine was a delightful way to end the meal and I slightly wish I had managed to savour some until I had the crumble for desert, alas this wine was too good to be saved until then!

Once we had sampled our way through the wines most of us had eyed off enough of dishes around the room and we famished enough to pick a few items off the menu to try. BF and I opted to try a few items off their share menu. I fell in love with the Beetroot dish off the menu, BF picked out the chicken and we decided to grab the share bread. When I went to order the food however we were informed that they had just sold out of the chicken dish. We ended up picking the venison chorizo instead and decided we have to return soon to see what is so good about the chicken.

Beetroot, Walnuts, Feta and Spinach warmed.

Beetroot, Walnuts, Feta and Spinach warmed.

While the warm beetroot was a little different on first bite, the flavours in this dish all worked perfectly together and this dish did not last long with my love of beetroot.

Margaret River Venison Chorizo served on fresh house bread with a lime wedge.

Margaret River Venison Chorizo served on fresh house bread with a lime wedge.

This dish was passed around the table before it reached us and was well received. The chorizo had a bit of a bite but the lime juice helped tone it down. Again more of the bread which BF quickly devoured as he had already polished off the bread platter (pictured below). We will definitely be back just for the bread alone!

Share bread.

Share bread.

Apple and Strawberry Crumble.

Apple and Strawberry Crumble.

When I looked over the menu I stumbled across the deserts and was instantly sold on the crumble. I had this confirmed by the staff member who took my order and commended me on my choice. I was not let down by the crumble which just hit the spot, and the ice-cream that came with it was to die for.

Overall Bad Apples was a great place to have dinner and a drink. The staff were more than friendly and helpful even when they had a line outside the door on a Wednesday night. I will be back for sure and early enough so I can score a table before the crowds begin to arrive.

Until next time!

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Monthly Review: March

Hi everyone,

This past month has been quite a hectic one and I have not had the chance to get out to wine and dine all that often. I did however still manage to come across some new favourite places and drinks over the course of the month. Hope everyone has had a good Easter and is welcoming the cooler conditions in the Southern Hemisphere, or the hopefully warming conditions in the Northern Hemisphere.

1. Favourite drink of the month?

I went to the Trustee Bar in Perth with my friend C earlier this month and we tried out some of their cocktails as well as their tasting plate. I really enjoyed their Cider Slider, pictured below. A full write up of the cocktails we tried and thr Trustee can be found in this post.

Cider Slider ($16).

Cider Slider ($16).

2. What has been the best value wine of the month?

Lab, 2010 ($10 at Liquorland). The full review of this wine can be found in this post.

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3. What has been added to my to-try wine list?

Talkavino perked my interest in trying Saperavi and Arneis varietals from their home regions in comparison to the Australian wines that I tried, especially as the Australian Saperavi from King River Estate was a favourite of mine on the night.

Sapaveri.

Saperavi.

4. What restaurants do I want to return to?

I went to Bad Apples Bar in Applecross last week for another Wine Century Challenge meet. While I was there I had a chance to try some items off their menu as well as the chance to eye off many other dishes that they offer. I was very impressed with what I tried and saw and will be back for sure. Full review will be up next week along with the wines sampled for the Wine Century Challenge.

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5. What was my favourite meal this month?

I haven’t eaten out all that often this month – I did however have lunch (finally) at the Pickled Fig in South Fremantle, the blog post for this meal is still in the works however this summery gnocchi dish was delicious and quite filling. I cannot wait to head back and try more items off their menu!

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Going Gnocchi with Mount Barker free range chicken

6. Upcoming events for next month?

Inaugural Food and Wine Event at Bad Apples Bar including Oakridge wines – April 8th.

Yelp’s Garden Party – April 13th (RSVP required).

Fine Food Western Australia (food and wine industry trade show event) – April 14th-16th.

Northbridge O-Day – April 21st.

The last Twilight Hawkers Market will occur on April 26th so If you have been wanting to go one Friday and have not done so – you have one month left!

7. Favourite wine packaging?

I know this may be cheating but does Sangria in a Teapot count? This is how I was presented with my Sangria that I ordered at Bobeche Bar in Perth. While it was a little lacking on the ‘punch’ that I like to have in a Sangria I cannot fault them on the presentation.

Sangria Teapot.

Sangria Teapot.

8. Best service?

Bad Apples wins for the best service hands down as their service was friendly and attentive even while the place had a line outside the door on a Wednesday night.

9. Restaurant I am most keen to try next month?

I am planning to visit Jamie Oliver’s new restaurant in the Perth CBD, Jamie’s in the next month or two. I will just need to arrange a booking as I am not the most patient person who can wait 2+ hours for a meal, which was the estimated wait time when Jamie’s had it’s soft opening just in time for the Easter long weekend. The menu for Jamie’s can be found here.

10. Wine Century Challenge.

Total: 44 varietals.

Favourite = Alicante Bouschet and Touriga Nacional

Until next time!