James Halliday "Fruit from Greenock and Stone Well, 100% whole-berry fermented, aged on lees in older oak for 15 months. There's a smoothness about this wine which will win friends easily - it just slips down. Aromas and flavours are in the typically dark-fruited Barossa spectrum, and whilst not overly ripe there is a sense of sweetness on the palate. The tannin quietly plays its part."
95 Points - Campbell Mattinson, The Winefront "This is swish. Straw-yellow in colour, stone fruit riddled, shy on the nose but textural and alive on the palate. A gentle creaminess, spice notes, slate even, honeysuckle and toast. Extremely pure. Flowing robes of flavour. Grapefruit-like bite to the aftertaste, as a distinct positive. It’s still gathering itself but already it’s a treat to drink. A beautiful, beautiful wine."
Best Sauvignon Blanc at the 2020 Halliday Wine Companion Awards
James Halliday "A selection of the highest quality fruit, fermented in two barriques. Upon completion, the wine remained on lees for a further 15 months with a bit of batonnage to imbue textural complexity. More reticent aromatically than the standard cuvee, the future lies tucked in between the baby fat of piercing fruit intensity and the sheer tenacity of flavour. This deserves a place among the country's few seriously fine examples - it will unravel beautifully with patience."
97 Points - James Halliday "Hand-picked in two parcels from the original ancient vine plantings (1857), fermented and aged on skins in a ceramic egg until Oct '17. The second parcel was 100% whole-bunch fermented and matured in used puncheons. You might guess a $100+ price. This is a really attractive varietally pure wine, with very good colour and structure."
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98+ Points Stuart McCloskey "The aromas waft from the glass with consummate ease… Touches of smoked, grilled meat, redcurrant, liquorice, dried orange rind, blood orange, spice (black pepper & cinnamon) and rose hip. Very Burgundian. The palate is medium bodied with tannins as long and fine as one could imagine. As with their Chardonnay – This wine shows an amazing level of control. Not a millimetre is out of place. The fruit conveys a cool-climate, saline elegance which is far from sparing. Unfurling, charming, precise and certainly built for the cellar (5-10 years). There are two Aussie Pinot Noirs which I go to and this is one… Such is the brilliance, Paul & Gilli should pay Burgundy a tutelage visit. For now, I award 98+ points but I believe this will increase over the coming years. This is a fantastic Pinot Noir and a benchmark against which other Aussie wines should be measured. Decant for one hour and serve using Zalto Burgundy glassware"
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97 Points - James Halliday "MV6, 777 and 115 clones, 60% from the Derwent Valley, 30% East Coast and 10% Tamar Valley. The bouquet is multifaceted, with no single message from the single vineyard group, the palate moving onto another tier, but carries with it the higher-toned red fruits of clone 115 (compared to MV6 last year). It also achieves a lightness of touch without any sacrifice of line or length. This is the serious business of enjoyment, not the science of dissecting small pieces of a large puzzle."
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96+ Points - Stuart McCloskey “The Pinot Noir for the ’17 Avancé was sourced from three vineyards in Southern Tasmania’s Upper Derwent and Coal Valleys. Sweet, succulent entry with an abundance of red cherries, wild strawberry, plums and sweet spices all laced together with bright, perfectly judged acidity. Medium-bodied, with pure silky tannins. The quality of racy, plush fruit is exquisite however, it’s the wines overall balance and completeness which stands out the most. You will have to look very hard to find a better buy for the money. A wine of pure and total pleasure. Just gorgeous and not to be missed”. Served in Zalto Burgundy glass (Highly-Recommended by the way! ), drinking beautifully now but will develop over the next 3-6 years."
Campbell Mattinson (The Wine Front) "From one end of the price scale to, almost, the other. This is an impressive wine, from an impressive producer. Excellent varietal character including a hearty sling of flavour through the finish, as is the way of the better examples. This pinot noir is blessed as much with confidence as it is with length, its sour-smoky fruits littered with sweet herb and orange rind notes, a whisper of reduction not hurting matters at all. A dry, structural, fruit-pulsed finish makes for a beautiful exit. Quality and value are both on offer here."
Top Rated Pinot Noir at the 2020 Halliday Wine Companion Awards
97+ Points - Stuart McCloskey "Franco’s 1er Pinot Noir always comes from a block from his top paddock vineyard called 'SRM'. This block faces West but runs down to the South. This is the only block which sees the inclusion of around 20-25% whole bunches in the ferment. There’s a heavenly, very pure bouquet – crushed wild strawberries intermixed with a melange of red berry fruits, anise, a tartness coming from cranberry scents and a lift from aromatic violets and rose petal. Everything is pulled together with a lovely minerality bordering salinity. The palate is medium-bodied and tensile. Wonderful judgment between the fruit, filigree tannins and perfectly pitched acidity. As with the nose, the purity is breathtaking. There’s a captivating sense of weightlessness – Feminine and highly intellectual. The never-ending finish of blood orange sorbet is a joy. Franco should seriously consider a rebrand from 1er to Grand Cru as this is special. Drinking now to 2025 and would benefit from a further 1-2 years in the bottle. Decanted for one hour and served using Zalto’s Burgundy glassware."
97 Points - James Halliday "This is the standard-bearer for Hoddles Creek's estate-grown pinot noirs. Bright crimson-purple hue of moderate depth; the perfumed bouquet has spice, hints of violets (unexpected so soon, but don't complain), cherry and plum, a gathering replayed on the stage of the palate which is wonderfully long."
97-99 Points - Wine Advocate "The 500-case production of this wine comes from a three-hectare parcel of Roussanne planted in 1909. The Chateauneuf du Pape Roussanne Vieilles Vignes takes the quality of Beaucastel's traditional white and raises it another level. Caramelized pineapple sounds sweet and cloying, but it isn't when it's backed by amazing texture, citrus zest and a briny sensation on the never-ending finish. As this was the last wine of my visit to the estate, I found it especially hard to spit out."
96-99 Points - Jeb Dunnuck "Last of the whites, huge notes of buttered citrus, exotic flowers, pineapple, honeysuckle, and almond notes all emerge from the 2017 Chateauneuf-du-Pape Roussanne VieillesVignes, a rich, yet fresh, elegant, vibrant barrel sample that does everything right. You can’t find a wine like this anywhere else in the world, and it’s consistently one of the world’s great white wines."
Gourmet Traveller Wine 'Best buy wines to cellar' - "Cobaw Ridge produces scintillating wines in which charisma is never lacking. This pinot noir asserts many things from the glass, with wild-edged herbal, spicy, pickled cherry scents and a palate that spreads luxuriously with brambly, blackberry flavours. So much going on, so unique. It’s fun to approach, but will be all autumn scents and flavours with 5-10 years of maturity."