E. Guigal Côtes du Rhône
Thomas Girgensohn's Australian Wine Reviews - and Beyond
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6d ago
 The Guigal Côtes du Rhône may well be the world's greatest quality value wine. It is also the greatest equalizer: not too big, not too skinny; not too sweet, not too savoury; structured, but not too tannic. I once observed aspects of the production of this huge volume wine at the Guigal facility. The secret may be that the family manages to pay as much attention to each production step, and in particular the blending, as they do to their premium wines.  So what is special about the 2019 Guigal Côtes du Rhône? The wine is full-bodied. The Grenache element stands out with its ..read more
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An Unknown Barolo
Thomas Girgensohn's Australian Wine Reviews - and Beyond
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1w ago
I do not know if this has happened to you, those who have a wine cellar. Yesterday I came across a Barolo which was totally unknown to me. I do not know the maker nor how I acquired the wine. I have a basic cellar management system, but I decided not to look anything up. This is the wine. 2013 is good, Rocche di Castiglione is a great vineyard. The colour of this 2013 Arnaldo Rivera Barolo looks very advanced, but with Barolo it is hard to tell, as orange is common in young wines, too. This is a bit brown, though. The fruit is strawberry and raspberry, but tar and roses are the more promin ..read more
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Bass Phillip Bin 17k Pinot Noir
Thomas Girgensohn's Australian Wine Reviews - and Beyond
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3w ago
 It is interesting that leading wineries find it difficult to replicate the quality of their icon wines in newer brands. Henschke is a prime example. The quality of Hill of Grace, Cyril Henschke, and Mt. Edelstone has never been reached by any of its proliferation of newer wines. Bass Phillip is another example. There have been some attempts to replicate the success of the Estate Vineyard in other Gippsland vineyards near by. One such example is the Bin 17k from a vineyard only 350 meters away from the home vineyard. Phillip Jones has always been clear he wanted to make Burgundy wines and ..read more
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Chatto Isle Pinot Noir
Thomas Girgensohn's Australian Wine Reviews - and Beyond
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3w ago
 Chatto's Huon Valley vineyard, a warm site facing north in a cool region, was first planted in 2007. A small part of the vineyard was first bottled separately in 2014 as the Isle Pinot Noir. While the whole vineyard is planted with nine Pinot Noir clones, only three go into the Isle Pinot Noir, with clone 777 dominant. Limestone, calcareous mudstone and a lot of fossils form the soil. The wine is made with a significant proportion of whole bunches. Vintages vary a lot in Tasmania's marginal climate leading to great variability in wine quality. It is clear that the 2018 Chatto Isle Pino ..read more
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Mauro Molino Barbera D'Alba
Thomas Girgensohn's Australian Wine Reviews - and Beyond
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1M ago
  Mauro Molino is one of the stalwart wineries of the La Morra subregion of Piedmont. I described the Rosso in the last post as a pizza wine. Well, Barbera goes pretty well with pizza, too. This 2021 Mauro Molino Barbera d'Alba tastes of fresh red cherry, getting darker down the palate. There is a bit of underbrush, too. This is a medium-bodied wine with quite good intensity. The acidity is very high and remains a dominant feature of the finish. This is a very lively wine. The acidity is perhaps a bit much. Score: 91/+  ..read more
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J.D. Vajra Langhe Rosso
Thomas Girgensohn's Australian Wine Reviews - and Beyond
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1M ago
 There are mainly two styles of entry level wines involving Nebbiolo in Piedmont. One is the Langhe Nebbiolo, a 100% Nebbiolo which for one reason or another does not go into Barolo or Barbaresco, the other is a Rosso, which is a blended wine, often involving a Bordeaux variety, mainly Merlot. The 2020 J.D. Vajra Langhe Rosso, however, focusses on Piedmont varieties; Nebbiolo, Barbera, Dolcetto, and Albarossa. Some Pinot Noir is included as well.  This wine is medium-bodied, with a bright red colour. Fresh red cherry flavours jump out of the glass. The fruit is backed up by firm ac ..read more
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Giant Steps Applejack Pinot Noir
Thomas Girgensohn's Australian Wine Reviews - and Beyond
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1M ago
 Giant Steps is one of the success stories of the Yarra Valley. Like few others, Giant Steps have emphasised the characteristics of different vineyard sites. Still, we have perhaps not conclusively progressed past the differences between the Valley Floor and the Upper Yarra Valley. The Applejack vineyard fulfills many conditions for great Pinot Noir; it is closely planted with seven clones; a sloped vineyard at higher altitude; east facing. The only drawback; clay soil, not ideal for energetic Pinot Noir. The 2021 Giant Steps Applejack Pinot Noir is very perfumed, with rose petals so pr ..read more
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Tyrrell’s 4 Acres and 8 Acres Shiraz
Thomas Girgensohn's Australian Wine Reviews - and Beyond
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1M ago
Over the last couple of days I had some protein dinner and given relatively warm, but not hot summer temperatures, I was wondering what to pair this with. South Australian Shiraz would have been too heavy, a different grape variety did not seem right. Why not Hunter Valley Shiraz, a lighter, less alcoholic style, often with velvety tannins. It gave me an opportunity to drink two highly regarded Tyrrell’s wines side by side.  In Burgundy, it is easy to find maps of all vineyards; not in Australia. It is unfortunate in the case of Tyrrell’s, as it would be instructive to see the location an ..read more
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Te Mata Gamay Noir
Thomas Girgensohn's Australian Wine Reviews - and Beyond
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1M ago
 This 2022 Te Mata Gamay Noir is a great find.  There is a lot of talk about the improvement of Beaujolais cru, and some of this is justified. And then you get a Gamay from left field, at half price or less, which is quite exciting. The colour is carmine (ruby with a bit of blue), very appealing. On the palate, there is raspberry fruit, but also a lot of savoury flavours, game and green tea. The mouthfeel is velvety. The wine is not very concentrated, but the flavours create an intriguing complexity. Acidity and tannins are medium. This is a good quality, very drinkable great su ..read more
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What Did We Drink For Christmas?
Thomas Girgensohn's Australian Wine Reviews - and Beyond
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2M ago
 My Christmas was quite small in scope and the wines were mostly disappointing. A Pipers Brook Late Disgorged Sparkling was fine, but not very distinctive. The Tyrell’s Vat 47 was better, quite traditional with a nice peachy mouthfeel. On the red front, I was disappointed by two different Mataros (see post below). I then needed something special. I opened a 2009 Robert Chevillon 1er cru Nuits-Saint-Georges Les Vaucrains. The fruit profile was fine, but nothing special. I enjoyed the silky finish. What did you drink over Christmas? Get on the board! I would like some American or European c ..read more
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