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Langmeil, Valley floor, 2008

Shiraz
Langmeil, Valley floor, 2008
Barossa Valley, Australia

The winery was started by a 36 year old German blacksmith named Christian Auricht, who arrived in South Australia in 1838 after emigrating from Europe. When he and his family arrived they had little more than the clothes on their backs. In 1843 he planted his first vines, which were of the classic Shiraz variety, and established the winery.

Over 160 years later and Langmeil is recognized as producing some of the most famous wines in Australia. The winery is located in the Barossa valley, a region just a short drive from Adelaide, and known for producing deeply colored, rich and concentrated Shiraz. Traditional techniques are still employed, such as the use of a basket press and the avoidance of clarification techniques which could rob the wine of its pure flavor.

It is almost black in color, with high amounts of viscosity. The nose shows excellent intensity of raisin, clove and black cherry aromas. The palate is ultra-ripe and displays sweet fruit flavors on a full-bodied frame. The softness of tannins makes it a delight to sip by itself, for those who enjoy concentrated and powerful red wines.

Food and wine pairing: This wine pairs well with spicy dishes and beef.

Markus Molitor, Zeltinger Sonnenhur, Spatlese, 2007

Riesling
Markus Molitor, Zeltinger Sonnenhur, Spatlese, 2007
Mosel valley, Germany

In 1984, at the age of 20, Markus Molitor assumed responsibility for his family’s estate. He was the 8th generation to make wine in the Mosel. Young and ambitious, he set out to create wines that would rival the very best in this historic region.

The Mosel is considered by many to produce the world’s finest Riesling. The steep slopes provide excellent exposure to the sun in this northerly climate, and the slate soils not only reflect heat back onto the vine but they also give a unique taste to the wines, which are often described as having a flavor of minerals.

This is a Spatlese, which means late harvest. The grapes are picked in the autumn and brought to the cellars where they slowly ferment. At a low alcohol degree, Markus stops the fermentation to achieve a beautiful balance between sweetness and acidity.

This wine is perfumed, showing exotic notes of peaches and apricots. The palate is medium sweet, with refreshing acidity racing through it, and a combination of stone fruit and sweet apple flavors.

Food and wine pairing: This is the perfect complement to spicy dishes, and can pair well with light desserts.

Chateau Brane Cantenac, AC Margaux, 2nd growth, 2007

Meritage – Cabernet Sauvignon & Merlot
Chateau Brane Cantenac, AC Margaux, 2nd growth, 2007
Bordeaux, France

Chateau Brane Cantenac was classified as one of the best wines of Bordeaux in 1855, ranked as a 2nd growth. In recent years the owner, Henri Lurton, has catapulted the quality to a new level, garnering significant attention from wine critics.

The beautiful chateau is tucked away in the Margaux appellation, a region known for wines of great elegance and finesse. The gravelly soils are well-drained and reflect heat back onto the vines, which is ideal for the late-ripening Cabernet Sauvignon. The grapes are harvested by hand and then sorted using a state-of-the-art optical selection machine which only allows the finest grapes to be fermented.

Medium to deep ruby in color, the nose shows red and black cherry aromas, a hint of earth and soft leather, and the sweet aroma of vanilla. The palate is dry, medium to full bodied, with cassis and chocolate flavors.

Food and wine pairing: Perfect with lamb, beef, and a variety of red meats. It will also pair well with a selection of cheese.

Chateau Smith Haut Lafitte, Pessac Leognan, Grand Cru Classe, 2008

Meritage – Cabernet Sauvignon & Merlot
Chateau Smith Haut Lafitte, Pessac Leognan, Grand Cru Classe, 2008
Bordeaux, France

Florence and Daniel Cathiard, former members of the French Olympic ski team, purchased the property in 1991. Smith Haut Lafitte had always been one the better properties in the Pessac Leognan region, and following massive investments in the vineyards and winemaking the Cathiards have elevated the quality to rank amongst the finest wines of Bordeaux.

The 2008 vintage is a blend of 60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 32% Merlot, and small amounts of Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot. The average age of the vines is now 38 years old, and the roots plunge over 20 feet into the subsoil. Smith is one of the few chateaux to actually make their own barrels and the wine spends 18 months slowly ageing in cask, which adds extra depth and complexity.

This is a vintage that is approachable in its youth, showing characteristic blackcurrant, coffee and vanilla flavors. Robert Parker rated it 92 points.

Food and wine pairing: Perfect with red meat dishes and a selection of hard cheese.

Poggio Antico, Altero, 2005

Sangiovese
Poggio Antico, Altero, 2005
Brunello di Montalcino, Tuscany, Italy

Poggio Antico produces some of the most stunningly beautiful and complex wines of Italy. This 2005 vintage is consistently rated over 90 points by the major critics, and yet again, it came in 1st place in our blind tasting selection process.

It is produced from 100% Sangiovese, which is the law in this classic Italian region situated in the southerly part of Tuscany. Grown at higher elevations in a cooler microclimate, the grapes benefit from a longer ripening period to develop their layers of flavor.

The color shows maturity with a garnet tinge to the rim. The nose is expansive and intense, with a bouquet of dark fruits, leather, tobacco and wet earth. The palate is dry, full bodied, with firm chewy tannins that melt into the rich black cherry flavors. At once elegant and complex, yet powerful and concentrated, this has all the hallmarks of a great wine.

Food and wine pairing: This will pair best with pasta in a tomato sauce, as well as lamb and beef dishes.

Brokenwood, 2007

Shiraz
Brokenwood, 2007
Barossa valley & McLaren Vale, Australia

Established in 1970, Brokenwood Wines has evolved from a weekend venture for self-professed hobby winemakers into one of Australia’s most reputable wine labels.

It was founded by a trio of Sydney-based solicitors, including Australia’s most famous wine writer James Halliday. They paid a record price for a 10-acre piece of land and planted it with Shiraz and Cabernet. Forty years later, some of Brokenwood’s wines are classified as “outstanding”, the highest possible rating for Australian wines.

This wine is a blend of Shiraz grown in the Barossa and McLaren Vale. The Barossa fruit brings spice, blueberry and earthy notes, while McLaren Vale brings flavors of chocolate and ripe black cherries. The wine is matured in American and French oak for 18 months, which contribute vanilla and smoky aromas, and bring a beautiful softness to the palate.

Food and wine pairing: This will pair well with red meat and spicy dishes, and is smooth enough to sip and enjoy on its own.

Poggio Antico, DOCG Brunello di Montalcino, 2004

Sangiovese
Poggio Antico, DOCG Brunello di Montalcino, 2004
Tuscany, Italy

Brunello di Montalcino is one of the great wine regions of the world, located in the southerly part of Tuscany. Here, the Sangiovese grape variety is king and produces classic wines with long ageing potential. By law, the wines must not be released for 5 years after the vintage to enable them to evolve, develop, and soften.

Poggio Antico is considered to be one of the greatest estates in the region. It is a superb expression of Brunello di Montalcino.
Deep in color, the nose shows great depth with layers to the complex bouquet including black cherry, leather, tobacco and licorice. The palate is dry, full bodied, showing firm tannins and a continuation of the flavours found on the nose. This wine has impressive length, superb balance, and outstanding complexity. We hope you enjoy it.

Food and wine pairing:
Pairs well with pasta in a tomato sauce, red meats, and hard cheeses.

Laurent Perrier, Brut, 2000

Champagne
Laurent Perrier, Brut, 2000
France

Laurent Perrier is a House that uses a significant proportion of Chardonnay in their best wines. Michel Fauconnet, the winemaker for the last 27 years, prefers wines of elegance, freshness, lightness and complexity. These are characteristics that Chardonnay brings to the final blend.

Produced only in outstanding vintages, this 2000 vintage is the epitome of the Laurent Perrier style. Fine, tiny bubbles stream to the surface, highlighting the lemon gold hue. The nose shows a range of ripe apple, citrus and toasty characteristics. The palate is dry, medium bodied, with multi-dimensional flavors of mineral, chalk, citrus and apple.

This wine has spent over 10 years maturing in bottle in the labyrinth of cellars that weave beneath this historic Champagne House. Michel at Laurent Perrier also produces “Salon”, one of the most iconic and rare Champagnes.

Food and wine pairing: The ultimate aperitif, and a perfect complement to caviar, smoked salmon, lobster and a variety of seafood.

Chateau Smith Haut Lafitte, Pessac Leognan, Grand Cru Classe, 2007, France

Meritage – Cabernet Sauvignon & Merlot
Chateau Smith Haut Lafitte, Pessac Leognan, Grand Cru Classe, 2007, France

Florence and Daniel Cathiard, former members of the French Olympic ski team, purchased the property in 1991. Smith Haut Lafitte had always been one the better properties in the Pessac Leognan region, and following massive investments in the vineyards and wine making Cathiards have elevated the quality to rank amongst the finest wines of Bordeaux.

The 2007 vintage is a blend of 60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 31% Merlot, and small amounts of Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot. The average age of the vines is now 38 years old. The wine spends 18 months slowly ageing in oak barrels, to add extra depth and complexity. Smith is one of the few chateaux to actually make their own barrels.

This is a vintage that is approachable in its youth, showing characteristic blackcurrant and red cherry aromas. Robert Parker rated it 90-92 points.