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Located in the Port Phillip Zone an hour's drive north of Melbourne, the Mornington Peninsula has a short, yet remarkable history of fine wine production. While there were a smattering of vineyards in the nineteenth century, modern viticulture on the Peninsula began when Ballieu Myer established a vineyard in 1972. This began an explosion of vineyards over the next thirty years with Main Ridge (1975) Stonier Wines (1978) Dromana Estate (1982) Moorooduc Estate (1983) Paringa Estate (1985) Port Phillip Estate (1987) Kooyong Estate (1996) Yabby Lake (1998), Ten Minutes by Tractor (1999) amongst those to become established during this time. Mornington Peninsula’s proximity to Melbourne and its underlying historical status as a holiday destination has strongly influenced the region's structure, influencing land prices resulting in a patchwork of small vineyards and producers spread across the area triangulated between popular weekend destination of Somerville, Flinders on Bass Straight and Rosebud on Port Phillip Bay. The result is a number of particularly accessible cellar door facilities and restaurants catering to tourists over weekends.
A maritime climate, the influence of Mornington’s proximity to the ocean, Bass Straight, and Port Philip Bay is the single most significant climatic factor affecting vineyards, followed by the diverse typography of terrain. Overall the climate is cool, the pervasive winds limiting issues with humidity and frost. The typography soil profile is diverse, impacting on viticulture, with the significantly cooler, elevated area surrounding Red Hill and Arthurs Seat (Main Ridge, Port Philip Estate) on fertile red volcanic soils, differing from the warmer low-lying areas of Moorooduc and Tuerong (Yabby Lake) which have well-draining sandy soils.
Mornington Peninsula is renowned for the production of high quality Pinot Noir and Chardonnay which are the most planted varieties, alongside Shiraz, Pinot Gris and very small quantities of Sauvignon Blanc. Mornington Pinot Noir is diverse, with many single vineyard bottlings ranging from light delicate expressions to more powerful styles with wines displaying flavours of bright cherry, strawberry and nuances of earth to powerful expressions with darker fruits and firmer tannins. Outstanding producers include Kooyong, Hurley Vineyards, Port Philip Estate, Ten Minutes by Tractor, Moorooduc Estate and Yabby Lake. Quality conscious producers follow the same model with Chardonnay bottling premium wines from site specific vineyards. On the whole these display delicate aromas of melon, citrus, with warmer sites display fig notes. Depending on winemaking styles they also may show notes of nutty characters of cashew and toasty oak or butter. Outstanding producers include Main Ridge, Kooyong, Yabby Lake, Moorooduc and Ten Minutes by Tractor.
While only planted in small quantities Shiraz from the Mornington Peninsula displays the classic cool climate characters including spice, black and white pepper, smoked meats and liquorice. Outstanding producers are limited, though the variety is starting to gain ground with both Paringa Estate and Foxy’s Hangout winning awards at major Australian wine shows in the last three years.
Pinot Gris is produced in small quantities and occasionally labelled as Pinot Grigio to indicate a dryer Italian style expression of the variety with T'Gallant and Quealy having had success with this variety.
James Halliday’s Wine Atlas of Australian, James Halliday
Victorian Department of Primary Industries
The Rhone Valley is kept in check by a sweeping Mistral wind that is tunnelled from the north of Rhone to the open and flatter southern Rhone. The Rhone river runs through the valley dividing the schist and granite soils.
The Northern Rhone is a difficult place to grow grapes, the slopes are steep to work and costly. Most of the wines grown are premium styles and its production is tiny when compared to Southern Rhone. Syrah hits new heights here in the form of spicy delights.
Red or White? Mainly red with a small amount of white made. And there is a blend where red and white is co-fermented together in Cote Rotie. Syrah with a splash of viognier - a rarity!
White: Viognier, Marsanne, Roussanne
This is spicy syrah land - black olives, smoked meats, cooking spices and heady florals are common tasting descriptors. And the tannins can be firm and fine in youth, becoming slender with age. The whites are richer and fleshy, viognier is the queen of hedonism.
Guigal, Coursodon, Pierre Gonon, JL Chave, Bernard Faurie, Balthazar, Stephane Ogier
Grenache reigns supreme in the south, although it is commonly blended with Mourvedre and syrah. Planted throughout the region, Grenache loves the warmth and sunny exposition made available to it in southern Rhone. Look out for the galette pebbles found in Chateauneuf du Pape - these heat up during the day and the extra warmth overnight continues to ripen the grapes on the old bush vines.
From rosé to affordable weekday pizza wines (Cotes du Rhone blends) through to ageable beauties like Chateauneuf du Pape, Grenache is a chameleon of grapes centred around vibrant red fruits and slippery tannins.
Red or white? Red and a little rose. There's also a small amount of a fortified white called Muscat de Beaume de Venise
White: Muscat a Petits Grains
Red: Grenache, Mourvedre, Syrah
Cotes du Rhone are the cheerful wines you want to reach for mid-week. Their fleshy and fruit nature make them deliciously enjoyable and they won't burn a hole in your pocket. The pinnacle of Grenache is reached in Chateauneuf du Pape wines. These have built-in structure and can age gracefully for many years. Look out for Village or Cru wines such as Vinsobres, Vaquerays, Gigondas as these are a happy medium between the bookend styles.
Font du Courtedune, Rayas, Beaucastel, Chateau de Fonsalette, Marcoux, Mont Redon
A mere generation ago, there mightn't have been much to say here about Sicilian wine. Apart from Marsala, the reds were mostly sold in bulk to fatten up pale wines from cooler European vintages, or lost in the production of vermouth somewhere.
But with it's special place at the confluence of Mediterranean and North African cultures, there's been a modern day renaissance in wine and food here that is nothing short of a remarkable. Australians have an affinity for this blend of warm Mediterranean climate, migrant culture and vibrant food. Sicily just makes sense.
Red or white?
Red production is dominated by Nero d'Avola, grown in most regions across the island. Ranging from juicy medium bodied cherry fruited styles blended with the lighter Frappato, to sturdy dark, structured and plummy numbers that will appeal to Shiraz lovers.
Nerello Mascalese is exciting for its structured, fragrant and tannic wines, coming on high from the steep volcanic slopes of the still very active Mount Etna.
Surprisingly, there's also plenty of white planted here, chief among them Carricante. Distinctively refreshing with notes of smoke, cut herbs and lemon tonic.
Carricante, Grillo, Nero d'Avola, Frappato, Nerello Mascalese
Occhipinti, COS, Terre Nere, Tenuta Aglaea, Feudo Montoni, Planeta, De Bartoli, Girolamo Russo, Passopisciaro
The Jura is a world unto itself. It's a melting pot of curious whites and reds, many you've probably never heard about. A narrow valley wedged between Burgundy and Switzerland, this is countryside filled with limestone cliffs and hillocks upon which the best vines are planted. These wines are tangy, complex, pure and delicious.
Red or White?
Both. The whites provide a gamut of styles from the fresh and crisp Savagnin and chardonnays topped up (ouillé), to the oxidative, rich and nutty styles left purposely under-filled to encourage flor development. Minerality is a recurrent theme, threading the whites together. The reds can be a little paler in colour but don't be fooled as they carry a lot of flavour.
Ploussard (or Poulsard), Trousseau, Pinot Noir
Most of the whites show saline and hazelnut tones, and if they are developed under flor there are richer yeasty and oyster shell flavours. As for the mountain reds, there is a cooler tannin profile and a lovely show of earthy freshness.
Domaine Pelican, Stephane Tissot, Jean Francois Ganevat, Frederic Puffeney
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Moorooduc Estate Pinot Noir 2018A sappy, round and richly flavoured pinot exuding mottled red berry and blue fruit scents along a twine of gentle acidity and herbal tannins. Hewn of fruit from three vineyards: McIntyre, Robinson and Garden. Given a longer maceration than most (19-21 days), this address' wines seem light years away from when last tasted. For the better! More structure, depth and intensity all around. Kudos. NED GOODWIN MW, Wine Companion
Medium to full ruby colour, the bouquet echoing the beginnings of some age development, with a toasty-smoky note and hints of berry compote, subtle foresty bunchy nuances too, and these are supported by abundant soft but drying tannins on the palate. There's a charming core of sweet fruit and the wine is overall really delicious and succulent. And very good value. HUON HOOKE, Real Review2018Pinot noirAustralia441$45.00 As low as $40.50
Kooyong Pinot Noir 2021
More product information will be added here soon! In the meantime, if you do have any questions at all about this product or others in our store, you can contact us by phone or email. Our friendly and experienced team are always happy to assist - we love drinking, selling, talking about and being in and around wine!2019Pinot noirAustralia441$53.00 As low as $47.70
Onannon Leongatha Single Vineyard Pinot Noir 2019
More product information will be added here soon! In the meantime, if you do have any questions at all about this product or others in our store, you can contact us by phone or email. Our friendly and experienced team are always happy to assist - we love drinking, selling, talking about and being in and around wine!2019Pinot noirAustralia441$60.00 As low as $54.00
Moorooduc Estate Robinson Vineyard Pinot Noir 2018
A lighter shade of Mornington, singing a soprano of bright red berry fruits and autumnal forest scents. Lifted and highly aromatic. The mid-weighted palate, lighter feeling than usual. Almost ethereal. Crunchy and saliva-sucking. Defined by an immaculate patina of tannin that is herb-inflected, yet ripe; detailed, yet svelte. A fine pinot of textural intrigue and freshness. NED GOODWIN MW, James Halliday’s Wine Companion
Beautifully ethereal strawberries and wild raspberries with fresh herbs and pomegranate, as well as a light leafy edge and forest wood. The palate has attractive, lithe, strawberry and raspberry flavors with some pastry-like smoothness through the mid-section. Delicately detailed finish. Bright and succulent pinot that will develop complexity in bottle. NICK STOCK, jamessuckling.com2018Pinot noirAustralia441$65.00 As low as $58.50
Montalto Tuerong Pinot Noir 2020
More product information will be added here soon! In the meantime, if you do have any questions at all about this product or others in our store, you can contact us by phone or email. Our friendly and experienced team are always happy to assist - we love drinking, selling, talking about and being in and around wine!2020Pinot noirAustralia441$71.00 As low as $63.90
Yabby Lake Single Vineyard Pinot Noir 20212021Pinot noirAustralia441$75.00 As low as $67.50
Paradigm Hill L'ami Sage Pinot Noir 20192019Pinot noirAustralia441$77.00 As low as $69.30
Hurley Lodestone Pinot Noir 20202020Pinot noirAustralia441$79.00 As low as $71.10
Hurley Hommage Pinot Noir 20202020Pinot noirAustralia441$79.00 As low as $71.10
Hurley Garamond Pinot Noir 20202020Pinot noirAustralia441$87.00 As low as $78.30
Domaine Gruhier Juliette Bourgogne Rouge 20152015Pinot noirFrance467$88.00 As low as $79.20
Paradigm Hill Adesso Pinot Noir 20192019Pinot noirAustralia441$95.00 As low as $85.50
Domaine de Pelican Trois Cepages 2019This is the historic red cuve?e from Domaine du Pe?lican. They have been producing it since their inaugural vintage, in 2012. At the time, they decided to vinify together all of their red grapes and thereby created this blend of Pinot Noir (60%), Trousseau (35%) and Poulsard (5%). Hence the name, Trois Ce?pages. The vineyards from which this cuvee is produced are all located on the village of Montigny-lès-Arsures, where the winery also sits. The soil is made of grey and black marls, partially covered with fallen rocks. The vineyards broadly face west, at an elevation of between 300 and 400 metres. Élevage is in burgundy barrels (50%) and foudre.
Light, bright crimson. Juicy and lively with both red and dark-red fruit. Pure and with a light dusting of stoniness. This is a wine that draws you in with its pretty and vibrant fruit and then holds you captive with freshness, super-fine tannins and great length. Charming but not in the least insubstantial. Delicate and intense at the same time. A wine of real beauty. JULIA HARDING, jancisrobinson.com
2019Pinot noir, Poulsard, TrousseauFrance412$115.00 As low as $103.50
Victorian Pinot Trio
Explore the cooler climes of Gippsland, Mornington and Central Vic with three of the best value pinots in the market.
2 x 2021 Bass River 1835 Pinot SHELF PRICE $34
2 x 2021 Allies Assemblage Pinot SHELF PRICE $38
2 x 2021 Silent Way Quarry Ridge Pinot SHELF PRICE $28$170.00 Regular Price $200.00
July Premium Six Pack 2022 - Le Tour Premium Reds$255.00 Regular Price $306.00
French Drinking Dozen - Winter 2022
France is an incredibly diverse country and one that offers a plethora of great drinking at all levels. From its balmy southern shores, warm and verdant interior to the cool limits of its northern hills there is truly something for everyone.
This mixed dozen offers up a selection of some of our favourite producers, regions and varieties as well as up-and-coming winemakers and dark horses you may not heard of. We have tried to include a little snap-shot of the state of play from this wonderful vinous country.
Each month this will be updated as we see great new wines, vintages rolls and the latest and greatest to hit our shores. At 15%-20% off or more, this a great way to explore France offering exceptional value and delicious drinking.
Don't forget to check back often to see the latest version of the French Drinking Dozen.$265.00 Regular Price $330.00