Somewhere in this mix of 'art' (see previous blog entry) are the labels released by younger generations going through a cycle of running the family business. I.e. that phase when the offspring of winery owners have left their teenage years and are now ambitious entrepreneurs. The parents have given free reign to the imagination of a new age grown tolerant of ripening grapes vintage after vintage and the acrid smell of fermentation.
Some will have the maturity to adopt century's of wine processes, styles and the pairing of earth to vine and styles to market - others will follow in the family's footsteps not because they have an understanding but of a trust there will be a transfer of something rewarding resulting from their energetic direction. Meanwhile parents winter at their seasonal homes saying 'the kids will look after things'.
This can also be the age easily intrigued by streamlined production equipment spewing wine as if creating money in a bottle.
Mindsets aren't necessarily passed from one generation to the next. The ambitious with a few hectares planted with this and that soon realize producing wine is more difficult than planting, picking and packaging. Now, being tenants of a craft winery, these newbies are susceptible to the tales spun by Conglomerates. The advantages of volume production with an offer to merge with a collection of wineries. Often retaining their individual labels along with their staff they rely on a Corporation to exceed previous profits or possibly bring the winery back on track. Modern upgrades installed as necessities: a chem lab, automated pickers, crushers then bottling lines, centralizing/expansion of docking and warehousing, all supporting modern techniques from preparing the earth to squeezing grapes.
The family name is imprinted on stylish blends of volume plonk or, if lucky, new generation labels of higher priced 'estate' wines. Hidden in the detail is a Corporate name bartering for shelf and print space ghost writing every tasting note. A wine to match new age consumers encouraged to pledge local loyalty... at least for the first release or the first sip.
My opinion, Ww
|Canoes at Harura Falls, NZ|
THE LINEUP: (reds and whites)
- Buried Hope Cabernet Sauvignon 2010, North Coast California, 91-1 -- G, North Coast, California, #356113 $19.95
- Chateau Timberlay Bordeaux Superieur Merlot - Cabernet Sauvignon 2011, 89-1 -- G, Bordeaux, France, #030072 $16.45
- ZOLO Classic Bonarda 2013, 88-1 -- V, Mendoza, Argentina, #398271 $13.95
- Jacob's Creek Reserve Shiraz 2013, 80 -- G, Barossa, South Australia, #665471 $14.95*
- Two Oceans Sauvignon Blanc 2014, 81 -- G, Stellenbosch, South Africa, #340380 $10.25
- Voga Pinot Grigio Delle Venezie 2013, NR -- G, Veneto, Italy, #669226 $15.30
(V - Vintages, G - General, O - Other, r-v - Rating-Value, a - aerated, c - cellar, NR - Not Recommended)
BURIED HOPE CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2010, North Coast California, 14.2% D xg/L, #356113 $19.95 (Tasted March 18, 2015)
A General listing. Made in California, USA by Pernod Ricard Winemakers Ltd. My notes: A blend of blackberries and soft black currant offers a start for the sniffer while a balanced flavouring of bright fruit and lasting dryness partners well with bbq'd meats and tomato sauced pasta dishes or meat lovers pizzas. A swirl drops long legs from a fragmenting rim. There's an unexpected smoothness that becomes more prominent as the finish develops. Could cellar a few more years but sample regularly. 91
ZOLO CLASSIC BONARDA 2013, Mendoza, Argentina, 13.8% XD 7g/L, #398271 $13.95 (March 22, 2015)
A Vintages release - date not given. Sustainably farmed. My notes: The winery's website excludes the Bonarda label. Almost black although the meniscus shines with deep ruby purple in candlelight. The viscous produces slow legs dropping from a well rounded rim and there's a silky smoothness to the first sip. Heavy tannins leave a fine chalk texture to a soft blackberry flavour with bright acid and a natural impression. The finish is long but fairly flat making pairing limited, try veal Scaloppini or slow grilled calves liver with a onion and mushroom sauce. At peak now with a few more years of cautious cellaring. 88
JACOB'S CREEK RESERVE SHIRAZ 2013, Barossa, South Australia, 14.5% XD 6g/L, #665471 $14.95* (Tasted March 31. 2015)
A General listing *reduced from $16.95 produced by Wyndham Estate Wines Ltd. My notes: The 2004 and 2006 vintages were previously tasted with ratings of 79 and 81 respectively. This vintage has an attractive opaque violet ruby colour spreading smooth with a rim that fragments into long legs and lacework. The nose has an assertive tang balancing light aromas of tannic berries warmed by the sun. The first sip is bitter discouraging an invitation to sip then is flat and woody with an extra dry finish. Further sips have little appeal unless with the right savoury meal. Pair with meat lovers pizzas or grilled ribs. A 'serve with discretion’ shiraz that’s not likely to support further cellaring. 80
TWO OCEANS SAUVIGNON BLANC 2014, Stellenbosch, South Africa, 12.0% XD 7g/L, #340380 $10.25 (Tasted March 31, 2015)
A General listing by Distillers Corporation Ltd. My notes: The 2014 vintage fact sheet isn't as yet available on the website . There's a green tint to a mid yellow colour and a swirl leaves a thin film separating at the rim into lace and falling slowly. The aroma is delicate releasing a blend of dry tang and fumes of withered grass. The first sip at 12oC is bright, shows a slight gooseberry lime taste for an instant then goes into a long drying finish. Has a balanced start to herbaceous finish and a general appeal. Pair with barbecued chicken, mushroom or shepherds pie. A commercial drink now. 81
VOGA PINOT GRIGIO DELLE VENEZIE 2013, Veneto, Italy, 12.0% D 10g/L, #669226 $15.30 (Tasted March 30, 2015)
A General listing. My notes: Snooth (link above) has it priced just under $9CAD with the last review saying 'tastes like stinky cheese, really acidic...'. The nose has a dry tartness of lemons without the aroma. A thin film falls slowly from a jagged rim leaving a clean surface - the colour, a pale lemon juice. Tart and chalky on the lips then to the palate - a subtle sugar softens a long dry finish. I didn't recognize a grape and other fruit was undetected. Could pass in a crowded social setting where there's focus on conversation and a seafood buffet. I used part in a Cuban Cod recipe tried to pair with the meal but didn't work, not enough there - discarded the remainder. NR
CHATEAU TIMBERLAY BORDEAUX SUPERIEUR MERLOT - CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2011, Bordeaux, France, 13.0% D 6g/L, #030072 $16.45 (Tasted March 23, 2015)
A General listing. My notes: Several vintages of this wine were tasted in previous years with somewhat inconsistent results. The colour is a dark ruby still brightly edged. The nose has a floral touch to spicy raspberry plum aromas. A stiff tannin lays a background for a dry, woody, raspberry with the fruit fading quickly letting the tannins support the wood - a long and extra dry finish. A value with grilled beef or lamb and bbq'd ribs. At peak with a few years left. A drink now. 89