Published in the City Hub and City News.
2008 Innocent Bystander Chardonnay (RRP $20)
I am a sucker for new school chardonnay, and if you’ve been wondering what all the fuss is about, this is a perfect example of the taut, elegant, restrained style I so adore. Proprietor Phil Sexton left Devil’s Lair in Margaret River fifteen years ago and planted in the Yarra Valley, explaining: “I wanted to get away from warmer climate Chardonnay, wanted to choose sites and clones specifically to produce really fine Chardonnay, avoiding the traditional sort that’s made with cultured yeasts, super-clean winemaking, more overt oaks and automatic malolactic fermentation.” Nope, no malo. here!
2009 Frog Rock Pinot Gris (RRP $18)
This newly released wine made by David Lowe in Rylstone (forty clicks from Mudgee) would be a great pick for those a bit bored with Sauvignon Blanc. While it lacked the green juicy pear flavour I love from this varietal, it does have a crisp acidity that means it’ll go down a treat with dinner. It softens in the glass as it warms.
2008 Wine by Brad Cabernet Merlot (RRP $17)
The first thing I noticed was the funky pop art label; the second was how easy this boutique Western Australian wine was to throw down. Cabernet Merlot isn’t usually my thing, but this is a silky smooth quaffer with a serious edge. I got chocolate, green tobacco leaves and blackcurrants, with a few plums for good measure. Winemaker Brad Wehr’s keen on supporting smaller, independent wine stores, so if you’re looking for this one, try Annandale Cellars (02) 9660 1947.
Pyrmont Wine Buffs
It’s no accident that Pyrmont has again been blessed with the 'Steak & Shiraz' themed festival Hunter Valley Uncorked on Sunday 18th April. Apparently it’s one of the fastest growing areas for visitation to the Hunter Valley, with locals having an ‘on-going love affair’ with wine and food from the area! Rowena Hawkins from the Hunter Valley Wine Industry Association explains: “As many of our Hunter Valley visitors and wine consumers are based in this area, we would love to continue bringing a piece of the Hunter to their doorstep as long as they would like us!” Show ‘em you care by heading to Pyrmont Bay Park between 11am and 5pm to soak up music, play Pétanque, compete in wine spitting challenges, eat good NSW produce and drink wine!
Vintage at The Rocks
You don’t need to travel to the vineyards to enjoy a wine harvest feast, you just need to be in Jack Mundy Place in the Rocks on Friday 23 April for the inaugural Rocks Vintage Dinner. Sample the regional produce of Orange, Mudgee and the Hunter Valley by purchasing a $65 ticket. You’ll receive a glass of Orange sparkling on arrival, a tasting glass and a dozen $5 ‘rocks’ which you use as currency to buy tasting plates of food and wine from Rocks restaurants including Sake, La Renaissance Patisserie, Pony and Wine Odyssey. Sit back at long tables listening to the musings of regional food and wine authority, Lyndey Milan, while supping on dessert tasting plates and coffee from the Guylian Chocolate Café.
Taste Vietnam for Free
Marrickville Mayor Sam Iskander invites “all residents to come along and enjoy the entertainment, sample the delicious food and soak up the aromas and spicy flavours of Vietnam,” at Marrickville Council’s community event A Taste of Vietnam. It’ll be held at Marrickville Town Hall this Sunday 18 April from 11.00am – 2.00pm. The event aims to showcase the Vietnamese influence in Marrickville’s cultural melting pot. Try sizzling Nem Noung as you watch tai chi, ping pong champions, hip hop and local Vietnamese – Australian group, The Majestic Band. Best of all, it’s free!