Archive for May, 2011

2006 Grange hits Singapore

Reviewed offers by eWineasia, Le Vigne and Wine Exchange Asia

Just back from Istanbul and an exploration of Turkish wines. Now, before you scoff, Turkey has been making wine for over 3,000 years, it’s just taking a bit of time to get its act together. That having been said, if I was forced to drink the wine of the country I’m in, I’d rather be in Turkey than in China, India or England! And when it’s a choice between USD100 for Oxford Landing or USD20 for a half-decent Kavaklidere, I’ll take the Kavaklidere every time. Not sure about the syrah-merlot blend though.

Back in Singapore, you’ll have to check if these specials are still available. They were when I last looked but things change rapidly.

2009 / Chard Farm / Mata-Au / Central Otago / Pinot Noir – S$54, S$50 by the half case at Wine Exchange Asia. A very solid 93 points from Bob Campbell describing it as a “linear, accessible wine”.  RRP of NZ$43 so the pricing puts it into the “great value” BBI category.

2009 / Wignalls / Great Southern / Pinot Noir – S$52, S$49 by the half case at Wine Exchange Asia. Funny how names come and go. We were weened on two pinots from the west, Wignalls and Salitage, but haven’t tried either in years.  We should. The Big Red Wine Book gives this one 91 points (“excellent”) with drinking out to 2014. Not shy on the alcohol at 15% but they say “it’s at the big end of pinot, but still tastes nicely of the variety”. With a RRP of A$32, the pricing here, especially the half case buy, is spot on.

2007 / Earthworks / Barossa Valley / Cabernet – S$30.15 at Le Vigne. A good middle of the road cabernet with Wine Front giving it 86 (“reasonable drinking at the right price”) and Wine Spectator saying “very good”. Well, the price is right as it retails for A$16 making the deal here good value. Drink this year.

2007 / John Duval / Plexus / Barossa Valley / Shiraz Grenache Mouvedre – S$58, S$55 by the half case at Wine Exchange Asia – I recommended this wine back in December 2010 and I’ll recommend it again. Don’t take my word for it – Jeremy Oliver 93, James Halliday 93. Drinking out to 2015. The pricing is right where it should be for a wine that retails for A$39. A personal favourite.

2007 / Vinaceous / Red Right Hand / McLaren Vale / Shiraz Grenache Tempranillo – S$29.60 at Le Vigne. Now here’s an odd combination. SGT? Life’s a journey so definitely worth the experiment. James Halliday gives it 88 (“recommended, above average”) with drinking out to 2013. RRP is A$25 so the price here is in the “so cheap, lah” category.

A trio of shiraz from affordable to desirable….

2007 / Rocland Estate / Chocolate Box / Shiraz – S$35.90 at Le Vigne . This is the affordable end. Wine Enthusiast says 90 points and with a RRP of A$20, it’s good buying.

2007 / John Duval / Entity / Barossa Valley / Shiraz – S$62, S$58 by the half case at Wine Exchange Asia. Oliver 94, Halliday 93, drinking to 2016. Same recommendation as in December 2010 blog, i.e. buy it! Spot on value from a RRP of A$48.

2006 / Penfolds / Grange / South Australia / Shiraz – S$580, S$560 by the half case at Wine Exchange Asia. The big one. If you’re an expat and watch Australia TV in Singapore, you’ll be bombarded by ads that urge you not to miss the great opportunity you have whilst in Singapore to buy property. Well, here’s another. Buy Grange.  Why? Because it’s a steal compared with down under! RRP right now is A$599. You don’t need a degree in maths to know that you can really rub it in to your mates back home, not only about the tax you don’t pay, but also that your daily quaffer is Grange. Well, almost. It’s not drinking for about another 20 years so you’ll have to hang around a while to enjoy it. And if you do get posted back home, best to drink it before you leave. Bugger.

Putting the Grange aside, the “best buy” in this lot is the Vinaceous Red Right Hand, followed by the Chard Farm pinot and the John Duval Entity.

“It’s so sweet to have your vineyard named after your aunty, to have a cat called Rkatsitelli and a wine dog that enjoys merlot with its Chum” – Andrew Caillard, MW writing in Gourmet Traveller Wine, January 2008.

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Wine quotations

"A good bottle of wine contains more philosophy than all the books in the world" - Louis Pasteur

“The unexacting palates of the masses…are content to ask no question [on origin] so long as a florin or half-a-crown will purchase a roomy flagon of strong , full-bodied, fruity wine” – CE Hawker writing in 1907

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