“ The great wines of the world all have a sense of place. It is the winemaker’s role to capture the estate’s potential in every bottle without a heavy hand. An estate wine should be even more expressive and consistent each year. From vintage to vintage our expectations grow”. Craig Becker, Director of winemaking Somerstone Estate, Napa Valley, California
This 100 plus release titled South of the Equator, features most of the wine producing countries in that part of the world. The larger producers i.e Argentina, Chile, and Australia are well represented, while South Africa, New Zealand, relatively less prominently represented. Brazil, and Uruguay are not represented at all.
For the rest of the release, whet wine offers are fine, but lack high end products.
In the red category, the selection is wider, but here again there are only very few that can be considered absolutely magnificent.
Here are my recommendations:
Stour Cask Irish Whiskey, Telling Brothers, Dublin, Ireland
This 46 ABV, small batch Irish whiskey is smooth, beguiling, and offers complex malt flavours along with a satisfying finish.
700 ml., $ 79.95
Single Malt 20 -Year-old Scotch, Arran Distillery, Scotland
Pale and Dry Grande Champagne Cognac, Delamain, Charente Maritime, France
Cognac contains six sub-appellations starting with Grande Champagne, and ending with Bois a terroir. This premiere cru cognac drinks easy with a slightly salty flavour.
It is light, and inspiring in its refinement due to very restrained addition of caramel.
700 ml., $ 139.95
10-Year-Old- Tawny Port, Messias, Douro Valley, Portugal
Grand Cru Brut Champagne, Comtes de Dampierre, Champagne, France
Vibrant acidity, along with toasted brioche and black currant flavours make this bubby worth enjoying for a celebratory toast, and with light seafood dishes.
Chardonnay 2016, Hidden Bench Estates, Niagara Peninsula, Ontario
Although this winery is only a few years old, it produces fine and elegant wines that enjoy an international reputation. Its chardonnay and pinot noir are always first class.
This chardonnay offers complex aromas of apples and pears, with vanilla and herbal undertones. Minerality is strong in the mouth. An elegant and refined wine. Ready to enjoy with all kinds of seafood dashes including Dover sole fillets in a cream and white wine sauce, salmon Swedish style, Scandinavian-style marinated salmon filets.
Sabots de Venus, 2016, Apremont, Savoie, France
Light, floral, fruity high altitude wine to enjoy as an aperitif, with light sandwiches, or salade Nicoise with lemon as extra virgin olive oil dressing.
Reserve Selection Chardonnay, 2015, Raymond, Napa Valley, California
Golden colour. Complex tropical fruit aromas waft out of the glass. Full bodied, creamy with refreshing acid backbone. A fine wine with a long and evocative aftertaste.
Limestone Ridge-North Estate Bottled Riesling, 2015, Tawse Winery, Niagara Peninsula, Ontario
Block 10 Sauvignon Blanc, 2016, The Lane
Vineyards, Adelaide Hills, South Australia
Sauvignon Blanc, 2016, Greywacke, New Zealand
Pinot Grigio, 2016, Kellerei St. Magdalena South Tyrol, Italy
Grande Vinha Branco, Casa Ferrerinha, Douro Valley, Portugal
Chenin Blanc, 2015, Spier, South Africa
Chardonnay, 2015, Hill-Smith Estates, California, 89+/100
Muscadet de Sevre et Maine Sur Lie, DomainE du Bois Maligne, Loire Valley, France
Fields Of Joy Shiraz, 2015, Two Hands, South Australia
Dark red colour. Dark berry aromas dominate the nose. In the mouth, dark- cherry and savoury flavours enfold. A food wine par excellance for deeply flavoured dishes, i.e game stews, roasted sirloin of beef slices with sauce Bordelaise, and hard cheeses.
Coyam, Los Robles Estate, 2013, Emiliana, Colchagua Valley, Chile
A superb blend of syrah, carmenere, merlot, cabernet sauvignon, mourvedre, malbec and petit verdot. The wine smells of ripe red berries. Full bodied. Dried herb and tobacco flavours dominate in the mouth. “juicy”, well balanced with a long finish.
Vigna Manachiara Brunello di Montalcino, 2012, Tenute Silvio Nardi, Tuscany, Italy
Crimson colour. Black cherry, tar and violet aromas surge out of the glass. A muscular, full-bodied wine with assertive tannins. Cellar for four to five years.
If you want to dink it know pair with fatty, strongly flavoured foods.
Shiraz/Grenache, 2015, Hancock and Hancock, McLaren Vale, South Australia
Cahetau Capbern Gasqueton, 2012, Medoc/St Estephe, Bordeaux, France
Valpolicella Ripasso , 2015, Feudi San Pio, Veneto, Italy
Gran Reserva Rioja, 2005, Faustino I, Rioja, Spain
19 Block Mountain Cuvee, 2015, The Hess Collection, Mount Veeder, Napa Valley, California