There are only a select few, perfect locations, to grow great wine on this big blue orb of ours and those are between 30 and 50 degrees north and south latitudes. Those regions need to provide just the right temperature, humidity, heat and climate to grow high quality grapes. We are absolutely spoilt for choice when it comes to the northern reaches with the whole of Europe at our disposal, but travel further south and things get a little more interesting.
While New Zealand and Tasmania provide us with plenty of choices (and we would be remiss not to include them) the southern reaches sitting on and just below the 40 degrees latitude offer a up an exciting and unique drinking experience.
While grapes like riesling, cabernet and pinot noir are familiar to us, a number of the wines in this months pack aren’t seen so regularly on your local wines list or on the shelves of your corner wine store. From malbec in Argentina, pais in Chile and the infamous pinotage or the more classic varietals like chenin in South Africa, this is an exploration of all that is great in these vinous southern lands of ours.
Where do we start with such an awesome selection of interesting wine? It's hard to decide we might just do a quick run down by country.
South America is relatively new to the wine scene but has come along in leap and bounds. WE start with a couple of classics with the Finca Los Moras Malbec and the Santa Ana Cabernet. These are text book varietal wines with plenty to love in their up-front fruit and modern styling. For something a little different we through in the Bouchon pais. For those who do not know, Pais is an old variety that is Chile's answer to pinot noir. With a little more bite and a wild flourish this a great introduction to this fascinating wine.
Closer to home in New Zealand we have few classic drops with the Palliser Estate Pencarrow pinot. A wine you would be hard pressed to find with the structure, concentration and complexity at the same price. Off to Hawkes Bay for some stonking chardonnay from Bilancia fame and some of the world most underrated syrah from stars Te Mata. What a treat!
Just in our backyard, Tassie continues to pump out some of the best wine in the country and while we would never miss out on showcasing another great pinot there is some real winners with pinot gris and riesling on the rise. The Moores Hill gris is a freat example of textural and vibrant gris from the Apple Isle with the Riversdale riesling hot on its tale.
And for something a little different we have got the latest release Willie Smiths Cider. This is an absolute belter, and we couldn’t help but included it once we were told it had been released. Perfect timing! We will take that one!
Last, and something we don’t see much in Aus is a cracking selection of wines from South Africa. Long-term customers may recognise some of these wines and as far as we are concerned, they are some of the best modern day Cape wines to make it over. The Bare Bones cinsault is a zippy red full of energy while the Winery of Good Hope pinotage is a juicy and fun take on this classic red variety.
And what would a selection of wine from South Africa be without a chenin blanc. The Secateurs is clean and crunchy with a plush fruit profile that is cleaned up by chenin’s zippy acidity.
All in al a pretty awesome and exciting collection of stellar wines from the great south!