With Richard Slater & Grant Foulkes
2015 Brand’s Laira ‘Blockers’ Coonawarra Cabernet Sauvignon
Coonawarra, South Australia
14.5% RRP $27
Recently less fashionable than glam areas such as Margaret River, Coonawarra is a classic area for Australian Cabernet. The wines tend to be fine, and food-friendly, with excellent value for the buyer. This is a rich, satisfying, generous red wine, with abundant ripe red and dark berry fruit flavours. It’s floral with blackcurrant, mulberry, roasted nuts and a gentle wave of mint. The palate shows red and blue fruit characters mint floating over milk chocolate, plum and dark spices, with oak in a supporting role. Tannins are fine, mouthfilling and luxuriant. It already possesses a great mesh of fruit and developed complexity, yet is certain to provide drinking pleasure over the next 5 years with aplomb. Magic with lamb, it has the versatility to accompany a rich pasta dish, a casserole, or hard cheeses.
Conclusion: This wine will suit a simple meal but has the grace and power to satisfy throughout a varied multi-course dinner.
2017 St Aidan Wines Tempranillo
Ferguson Valley, Western Australia
14% RRP $25
St. Aidan Wines is nestled in the Ferguson Valley which is part for the greater ‘Geographe’ region of Western Australia. There’s a push over there to establish Tempranillo as the star of the region and with wines like this, it’s easy to see why. The 2017 vintage displays a wonderful tension between fruit and non-fruit characteristics. With a brooding tobacco leaf and cigar box nose, your first sip surprises when dark wild forest berries burst over the palate and a varietal lingering ‘cola’ completes the story. St. Aidan Wines is the ‘David’ to the Margaret River ‘Goliath’, so support the little guys and order a box, you’ll be well chuffed! Hide a bottle or two under your bed and dust it off in 5 years’ time for a bit of fun!
Conclusion: Pair with: Spicy Chorizo and Prawn Paella