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 WINES OF THE WEEK

More Wines of the Week  

  • Yarraman Banjo Collection Cabernet Merlot 2001
  • Peter Lehmann Barossa Semillon 2001
  • Heathfield Ridge Wonambi Shiraz 2000
 

On Wednesday, September 17, the Australian Wine Bureau held an "Australian Wine Experience" in the Atrium of the CBC Building in Toronto. There were 86 wineries present for this table-top tasting, pouring close to 400 wines. I confess I did not try them all, since I concentrated on those products that are available on general release through the LCBO. It was a terrific venue for a tasting; the light was perfect. Hats off to the organizers. The overall quality of the wines relative to the price showed why Australia is doing so well in our market. Here are three of my top picks:

Yarraman Banjo Collection Cabernet Merlot 2001 (Hunter Valley)
$11.95
The Cabernet Sauvignon for this blend was trucked from Western Australia's Frankland River, a distance of some 3300 kilometers, fermenting in tanker en route, to marry the Hunter Valley Merlot. The result is a dense purple wine with a vanilla, blackcurrant, slightly medicinal nose, medium-to-full-bodied and fruit-driven with a sweet blackberry flavour and a floral top note. ***½ (out of *****)
Food match: lamb cutlets; confit of duck

Peter Lehmann Barossa Semillon 2001 (Barossa Valley)
$12.95
If Semillon is to enjoy a vogue, it will be because of wines like this. Peter Lehmann's wines offer some of the best values for the price in the Australian category. Straw coloured with a peachy, guava nose and an unctuous oily note suggesting ageability, the wine is medium-bodied, dry, and mouth-filling with a lively acidic finish. ***½
Food match: sautéed cod; chicken breast

Heathfield Ridge Wonambi Shiraz 2000 (South Australia)
$13.95
This is unlike any other Aussie Shiraz on the list. It's not bold and brassy but restrained and elegant, in fact quite light weight for the variety. Ruby coloured, with a spicy red berry nose and an attractive violet scent, delicate, dry and lacey on the palate. ****
Food match: grilled quail; duck breast

 

 

 

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