INsite Magazine

Friday, November 13, 2009

Wine of the Week

Everybody looks for great wine at a fair price, and Australia is a country of great values and excellent wines geared to the American palate. Codewords: Fruit Forward. Yes, sounds like something on Bravo, but it's a style of wine more common in the New World (anywhere that's not Europe and Asia Minor, wine-wise) where we use techniques to maintain the ripe fruitiness of the wine but still have a reasonable alcohol content—in other words, wines that smell like those descriptions in the magazines: full of blackberry, black cherry and black currant flavors and aromas. A good Shiraz from Australia is the best of both worlds, with soft cassis notes backed up by black peppery tannins. It’s a wine you can have with hamburgers and pizza or filet mignon, with mac and cheese or cheese souffle, or just by itself.

My choice this week is from the Barossa Valley (outside of Adelaide on the western side of the south eastern peninsula of Australia). Wines from this valley are known to be big and ripe with full and rich flavors and a heavy does of alcohol. Chocolate Box Shiraz, made by Rocland Estates, is a great example of well-rated, yet affordable Shiraz, costing about $15 and available locally.

You might smell spicy, cigar-box notes with hints of cocoa and dried currants. On the palate you get blackberries, anise and a little coffee, finishing with soft and silky tannins. Plus you get a great label: a visual homage to 1950s Australian chocolates, calling it "Dark Chocolate" of a line that also includes "White Chocolate" (Sauvignon Blanc) and "Cherry Chocolate" (GSM Blend) and all great values. These are all perfect wines to pair with a Thanksgiving meal or to give as a Holiday gift. Who doesn't want a chocolate box as a gift?

—Daniel Eddy, Gainesville Wine Pairing Examiner and Store Mananger at Gator Spirits, Westgate Plaza

Labels: , ,


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home