- Posted by The CorkGuru
Earlier this month, we outlined a guide for Australian wine, drawing attention to the fact that the Aussie’s produce tastier vino than American wine drinkers realize. We thought we’d take this concept to the next level and have our resident wine newbie, the “CorkNoob”, tell us what she thinks after being tasked with purchasing some Australian wines and tasting them without any guidance. Here are her thoughts.
Being a new wine drinker, I have to admit I am somewhat intimidated by the thought of having to verbalize my wine tastings. I would like to put a disclaimer out there that I am not aware of tasting terminology nor do I know what “oakey” tastes like quite yet, but I’m hoping it’s a good thing that I have a fresh outlook on wine. Is it possible that I could coin a new wine tasting term? Hmm… “CorkNooberry?” I like how that sounds. Other than that, I am really excited and looking forward to the fact that my task today involves drinking wine. Cheers my friends!
Step 1: Buy Australian Wine
The first problem I noticed when I went into the wine store to pick out some wines (note: in the state of Pennsylvania you can only buy wine at wine and spirits stores or straight from a wine seller), was the very small selection of Australian wine. It’s basically an entire collection of Yellow Tail and maybe 3 other brands – each of those offering only 2, maybe 3 wine varieties max. Don’t get me wrong, Yellow Tail has some good options, but I’m sure there is so much more that Australia has to offer and would like to have on the US shelves representing their country.
I glanced over some of the Australian regions, which I felt smart knowing about after doing some research, and found a few options I thought would be a good idea to try in addition to fitting in my budget! I wanted to taste at least one Shiraz since I knew that was the type of wine Australia has been known for, and I had a great suggestion from a co-worker on a brand I actually found at the store. The @CorkGuru instagram page also had a comment on trying a Margaret River Chardonnay (Thanks @devilslairwines!), which influenced my purchase decision.
Drum roll please… Here are my purchases:
- Jacob’s Creek Reserve Vintage 2013 Chardonnay
- Rosemount Estate 2013 Chardonnay
- Wyndham Estate Bin 555 2012 Shiraz
- Rosemount Estate 2013 Shiraz
Now that I’m looking at this list, I’m noticing I only have Shiraz and Chardonnay wines, but I’m happy because this means I just might HAVE to go buy more wine soon. Also, I’m unsure on the specific regions these wines are from. Their labels only listed a broad region like South Australia – outside of the Jacob’s Creek selection from Adelaide Hills.
Step 2: Taste Australian Wine
Now that my purchase is complete, the cat is fed, and my recliner is in full recline position, I am ready for tasting time!
Jacob’s Creek Reserve Vintage 2013 Chardonnay
My first reaction is – I like it! It’s definitely of the ‘dryer’ variety, somewhat acidic. I would say it’s absolutely a solid dry white wine that I would pick up at the store again, and for the price it is excellent!
The description on the bottle says “white peach characters and a refined finish”. I’m not sure if my taste is just not “refined” enough, but I can’t really taste the peach flavor. It may be such a small touch of peach that it’s not too overbearing. I might have to try some others and come back to this one. (We’ll say it’s because I want to see if I can taste the peach in comparison, but we all know it’s because this one is tasty and I want more!)
Rosemount Estate 2013 Chardonnay
I have to admit, I purchased this wine on possibly the hottest day we’ve had yet this year, and I brought a glass with me while I laid in the sun at the park. This Chardonnay and I are already well acquainted.
Overall, another very delicious, dry white. I think it has some more acidity in it than the Jacob’s Creek Reserve, but somehow a tad sweeter now that I’m tasting them side by side.
To reference the label, “…peachy tropical fruit and melon with a hint of fresh lively citrus and a subtle oak finish.” The citrus explains the acidity factor for sure, and the tropical fruit melon makes me understand the sweet I am tasting. Well done!
Wyndham Estate Bin 555 2012 Shiraz
I have a feeling I’m going to like all of these! This is a very tasty red. I seem to vaguely remember the term “CorkNooberry”? There are definitely some dark berry notes in this Shiraz. Not too sweet, but just enough to give it some personality. If this Shiraz was a person, it would be slightly serious with an intriguing wit. I think we are going to be good friends, Bin 555 Shiraz.
Rosemount Estate 2013 Shiraz
This Rosemount Shiraz is very similar to the Wyndham Estate. I would say it’s a touch sweeter but not by much. It has that same CorkNooberryness to it. (Okay, I am done now.)
The bottle description states “juicy sweet with blackberry, plum and cherry flavours influenced by the subtle richness of oak.”
Does this mean I should be saying this is “oakey”? I don’t think my palate is at that level yet. I have to say, I’ll bet it’s the plum that sweetens this a bit, though.
Step 3: Consensus
Overall I am very satisfied with the Australian wines I selected, although I wasn’t given much of a selection nearby. I would purchase all of these again. I even had my boyfriend give them a try. He does not drink wine at all, and he said he would order the Chardonnay the next time we go out to eat. Although, he doesn’t think he’s classy enough to say “I’ll take a glass of Chardonnay, please.”
I’m not sure why anyone would have a distaste (no pun intended) for Australian wine. Every option I tried was delicious! I’ll take another glass, please!
What should the CorkNoob try next? Tell us in the comments or tweet us @CorkGuru.