May Mixed Dozen 2018 - Beautiful Blends

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  • South Melbourne
  • Sydney

In a wine world that seems obsessed with single varietal wines it is easy to forget that many of the most popular and celebrated wines both historically and today are blends. We seem to be conditioned to think that the purity of a single varietal wines trumps all, that to blend other grapes is akin to adding fillers or somehow dilutes the quality of the final wine. But the truth is that many regions are in fact defined by their blends and are some of most famous and sort after wines in the world.

Like a great chef or master perfumer there is great skill in getting the final blend to work together harmoniously. Each grape with its various flavours, aromas, textures, weight and intensities all working in unison, where the whole truly is greater than the sum of the parts. Complexity and interest arising not just from varieties that complement each other but often from the juxtaposition of varieties in the blend.

This months mixed dozen seeks to explore the world of wine blends and is a collection of classics and more modern stylings.

The Classics

From Bordeaux there is Poitevin a Merlot dominant blend from the Haut Medoc and a Cru Bourgeois. From the Rhone we feature both a white and a red. The red is from small producer Font de Courtedune and the white from king of the Rhone, Guigal. The Iberian Peninsula contributes a  juicy Rioja from superstar Palacios Remondo and, when talking classics it would be remiss of us not include a Port - Graham's 10 year Old Tawny is perfect for the cooling nights. Finally, Clairault's SSB is an Aussie interpretation of this classic Bordeaux white.

The New Wave

I have a penchant for white blends and they feature somewhat here. The Fighting Gully Road Arquilla (Beechworth), Simao & Co. (Rutherglen) and Apostrophe (Southern WA) white blends are seriously interesting drops made using an intriguing blend of often unsung varietals and delivering serious wines of perfect Autumnal texture. The Le Grive is an unmissable juicy, plush and soft Autumn red from Barbera and Pinot Nero (Pinot Noir) - not a common one at all but this Piemonte blend works incredibly well. Who would of thought?! Rounding out the dozen the Dub Style and Girt by Sea are odes to their French counterparts and equally tasty.

I hope you enjoy this mixed dozen and find a new or renewed appreciation for the art of blending.