Christmas Drinks

Hi everyone,

In Perth the temperature peaked at 39.6°C on Christmas Day. This weather was not the most inspiring for sipping on wine all day, neither was the fact that I had to drive between houses for different Christmas meals. In the end I still managed to sample 4 different wines across the day, which I will review in the post below.

1. Olive Farm 2012 Rose ($18 a cellar door)

I had this wine with a light lunch with my family. Slightly sweet, with a refreshing finish. We had some salads, cold meats and cheese for lunch and this wine paired quite well compared with the red wine which was being passed around the table as well. I think this wine would be good for barbecuing or picnics over the summer!

Olive Farm Rose.

Olive Farm Rose.

2. Moondah Brook 2011 Rose ($15 at cellar door)

I have reviewed this wine in a previous post and this was the other bottle of the Rose that I had purchased when I was at Houghton’s up in the Swan Valley. I think the heat had slightly destroyed my want for wine on the day, as after a glass of this Rose I shifted to water to try and rehydrate myself. I think this wine went well while I nibbled on cheese and fruit for an afternoon snack but the sea breeze arrived too late for this wine.

Moondah Brook Rose.

Moondah Brook Rose.

3. Ninth Island NV Sparkling

Creamy and zesty on the palate with a dry finish. Not a bad drop but not chilled enough for my liking by the time I had a glass poured which took away some of the magic I think this wine could have had. Still impressed however and really happy I got the chance to try this wine as I had been eyeing it off at work for ages.

Ninth Island NV Sparkling.

Ninth Island NV Sparkling.

4. Tim Adams 2005 Cabernet Merlot

This wine was a delightful way to end Christmas Day as the heat died off and the sea breeze brought in the cooler evening weather, which made for a nice cool evening to have a very late dinner of Christmas leftovers.

The wine had some good body likely from tannins and it’s time in oak which also assisted in part with the smoothness of the wine. The warmth the wine provided to my mouth was likely a result of the quite high alcohol content (14.5%) but it was balanced out nicely so that on the palate berries and a lot of fruit flavours were still present, which were also present on the nose. The wine was thoroughly delightful on the night, however I would have loved to have seen how it would have taken a few extra years of cellaring as it was showing potential for me.

Tim Adams Cabernet Merlot.

Tim Adams Cabernet Merlot.

Feel free to share what you had for Christmas and hope you all have a wonderful festive season!

Until next time!

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Wino 101: Christmas Drinks

Hi everyone,

This post will be short and sweet as I plan to spend Christmas Day with my family and BF’s family but i thought I would share with you what I am planning to drink today. The weather in Perth is getting really hot and today seems to be the ‘official’ start of a heatwave according to the radio as I drove home from work yesterday. I am not a fan of heat or humidity so my plan is to avoid my beloved reds in favour of chilled drinks.

I have chilled 2 Rose’s for today and will hopefully get the chance to compare the two over the course of the day. One is a sweeter one from the Olive Farm Wines to share with mum while I’m with the family and then my other Moondah Brook Dry Rose for when I head over to BF’s family’s Christmas get together.

Olive Farm Rose.

Olive Farm Rose.

Moondah Brook Rose.

Moondah Brook Rose.

Will be sipping on plenty of water throughout the day as I’ll be driving and the heat will definetly take it out of me. Hope everyone else plays it safe if they are on the road tomorrow or out in the sun!

Merry Christmas and Have a safe and happy New Year!

Wine(s) of the Week: Summer Break (week 5).

Hi everyone,

I caught up with some old work friends for a pub meal at the Sail and Anchor in Fremantle this week and had a few glasses of wine while I was there. I Unfortunately did not get any pictures or names of the wines I tried but I do know that I had an Australian Cabernet Sauvignon and a New Zealand Pinot Noir, both of which were quite nice. I was impressed with the food, drinks and the atmosphere of the Sail and Anchor. I have eaten here on a few different occasions it has impressed me each time, however be warned the portion sizes can get a little on the larger side so perhaps wait before ordering extra chips!

When my cousin came over this week so I pulled out a bottle of Brown Brothers Zibibbo which I had received at my 21st as she had not tried it before and I have and knew she would like it. The wine is a sweet sparkling with passionfruit really coming through on the palate for me. My cousin was a big fan of the Zibibbo. if you’re looking for a sweet wine you really cannot go wrong with anything by Brown Brothers.

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I also caught up with my Subiaco lunching friend for dinner to celebrate the end of the year and my degree and to also just have a catch-up. We ended up going to Fantastico in Subiaco as I was craving pasta. With my pasta I also tried Cape Mentelle Sauvignon Blanc Semillon with my dish and it was a nice chilled wine that relieved me a little after the hot and slightly humid weather that Perth had that day.

Cape_Mentelle_Sauvignon_Blanc_Semillon_large

Finally, BF and I went out for dinner on Friday night to The Quarter on Hay in the city to use a gift voucher that I had won when I purchased tickets to Unwined WA earlier this year. We sampled 2 wines from their impressive wine list with our meal. Below are the two wines we sampled (with images from the internet as we didn’t have the bottles of wine at the table with us).

Eidosela Albarino ’11, Rias Baixas, Spain.

Having enjoyed the Albarino I had at my Wine Essential Class when I saw this varietal on the list I really wanted BF to try it and let me know what he thought. Our first sips of this wine had it coming across unbalanced and slightly too acidic, once the wine had warmed a little from it’s overly chilled state the wine balanced out and was a delightful drop to enjoy, with a hint of fleshy peach fruit on the palate and a good touch of oak and acidity.

EidoselaAlbarino

Eidosela Albarino ’11, ($62 a bottle at The Quarter on Hay).

Chateau d’Yquem “Les Tertre Du Lys D’or”, Sauternes, France.

This wine was a slightly impulsive decision and one i did not regret! The wine had oak present on the nose and palate, with the wine being sweet and syrupy on the palate with a refreshing aftertaste that cleansed the palate quite well. A good wine to finish the meal off!

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Chateau d’Yquem “Les Tertre Du Lys D’or” ($14 a glass at Quarter on Hay).

Full reviews of my meals and the wines will be up over the next few weeks. Hope you all are having a wonderful weekend! Best of luck with any last minute shopping and hope you all enjoy a few days of quality time with loved ones this Christmas!

Merry Christmas!

New Year Resolutions

Hi everyone,

With Christmas very rapidly approaching I’ve not had all that much time for this blog this week, especially working in retail. I did though begun to think of what New Year resolutions I can make for next year, and realistic ones at that! So far I have come up with:

1. Leave an extra 5-10 minutes earlier so that I can take my time getting to a place and therefore, stick to the speed limit.

2. Focus on my teaching graduate degree – sorry to all who have enjoyed the daily postings on this blog but the posts will become less frequent come end of January when I return for my final year of university.

3. Get as many new wines varietals under my belt for the Wine Century Challenge.

4. Make more time to catch up old friends who I haven’t seen for too long!

5. Discover a good Italian restaurant in Perth that can become my favourite place for a good pasta dish.

How has everyone else’s Christmas shopping and New Year resolutions gone? Also I’m happy for recommendations from people to help me out with resolution number 5!

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Wino 101: Christmas Lunch/Dinner Wines (Australian Summer Edition).

Hi everyone,

While the northern hemisphere is rugging up for a cold winter in Australia we will be getting our barbecues and bathers out in expectation of a hot and sunny Christmas Day. This post will hopefully be a good guide for you, whether you are supplying a lunch or dinner at your place of even just bringing a bottle of wine to wherever you end up on the festive occasion. I have broken the wine’s down into different categories of food that is often served in Australia on Christmas Day, along with some personal favourites.

Appetisers:

A nice glass of bubbly is a good way to start off your Christmas Day of feasting.

BBQ:

Consider lighter to medium bodied red wine or an acidic and aromatic white wine or dry Rose will pair across the range of foods you can barbecue. When pairing wine with barbecue you want to keep the wine simple and uncomplicated to match the simple flavouring and styling of food that you would barbecue.

Seafood:

When it comes to seafood you want to pair it with a light wine which has a nice degree of acidity behind it so that you really get the best flavours out of pairing it with the seafood. Look for a citrusy Sauvignon Blanc, a fruity and crisp Pinot Grigio/Gris or a dry Rose.

Roast Lamb/Beef:

Lamb and Beef being  darker and more dense meats will need a wine with more structure and depth in it so that both the wine and the food will compliment each other rather than one overpowering the other. You will also need to take the sauce(s) you will be using into account as their richness will also impact upon which wine is your best option.

For the meat: a red wine like a Shiraz or Cabernet Sauvignon that has seen some age in the bottle as well as having had the chance to breath either in a decanter or by opening the bottle before serving. Also if it is a very hot day think about popping your bottle of red into the fridge for about 15 minutes before serving so that thee wine will be at it’s optimum serving temperature while you eat your meal (15-20C). The wine will also develop over the course of the meal as it warms and you will see it’s aroma’s and taste evolve along with your meal.

Roast Chicken:

A roast chicken being a lighter meat allows you to pair a white or red wine with it, depending upon what seasoning and sauces you. For a roast with a light lemon seasoning look for a Sauvignon Blanc, Riesling, Pinot Grigio/Gris, Chenin Blanc or continue with the bubbles.

Roast Pork:

Less tannic reds are preferred when pairing with roast pork as it is a lighter meat than Beef and Lamb and due to that needs to be paired with a more softer wine that still has enough body to pair with the meat. Look for a red blend that contains Merlot or Viognier to soften the wine.

Cheese/Fruit:

Soft cheese = eg. Camembert and Brie

Consider white or sparkling wines, so as to not overpower the softer textures and flavours of the wine, however if you are daring a full bodied dry red is said to also pair nicely due to it’s contrasting texture and flavour.

Hard cheese = eg. Cheddar and Parmesan.

Consider red wines for a stronger tasting cheese otherwise if the cheese is milder in flavour and medium-to-hard texture you can then look into pairing it with a fortified, sparkling or a full bodied white wine.

Eye cheese = ed. Edam, Gouda, Havarti and Swiss-styled cheese.

Consider a full bodied white wine, medium bodied red wine or a sweeter desert or fortified wine to play best with the softer textures of the wine and the stronger flavours found in some of these cheeses.

Blue cheese = eg. Gorgonzola and Danish Blue.

generally sweeter and fortified wines do better with blue cheese, however if it is a mild blue cheese you can possibly pair it with a softer red wine. Look for a wine which is aromatic but sweet to give you the best contrast with the blue cheese.

Fruit: consider aromatic and/or sweeter wines.

Desert:

Fortified, sweet still and sweet sparkling wines would go amazing with desert.

Until next time!

Monthly Review: November

Hi everyone,

So this is hopefully going to be a monthly segment that highlights some of the standouts for the month. Let me know if there are any questions you would like me to include in future monthly blog posts.

1. Favourite wine of the month?

Albariño from my wine essential course.

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

Peel Estate has some wonderfully aged reds (Cabernet Sauvignon and Shiraz) think 2005-2006 for $30-$35. Excellent value for money and my review of their wines will be up on Monday in a weeks time with my review of the winery and my tour of it.

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

Turkey Flat Barossa Valley Rose 2012.

4. What restaurants do I want to return to?

Al Dente – I would like to see what their service is like.

5. What was my favourite meal this month?

It is a toss up between my tandoori chicken pizza from Blend Cafe and the lamb from Capel Vale that I had at Gourmet Escape.

6. Upcoming events for next month?

Summer of Riesling is happening today at Matilda Bay (3-7pm).

George Street Festival (East Fremantle 1-7pm)

Christmas (look out for a food and wine pairing post for Christmas Day this Tuesday).

New Years (Look out for a posts on Champagne and Sparkling wines over the next few weeks).

7. Favourite wine packaging?

The Abstainer, Capital Wines.

The Abstainer, part of the Ministry Series.

The Abstainer, part of the Ministry Series.

Back label for The Abstainer.

Back label for The Abstainer.

8. Best service?

Capel Vale and Darbar both had excellent service who were attentive but did not hover over the table.

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

Dinner at the Pickled Fig in South Fremantle is something I have been wanting to try after having had brunch there a few months ago and enjoying it.

10. Wine Century Challenge.

Total = 23 varietals.

Favourite = Albariño

Meetings with the Perth wine bloggers will begin in December so here’s hoping that number will rise quickly and that I will have new favourites to share with you all soon!

Until next time!