Highlights of the Adelaide Hills Wine Region Tasting :: Part Three


So what do you do after you’ve tried some great Chardonnay? Well, at the Hills tasting you eat some delicious cheese and then drink some more great Chardonnay! The cheese in question was from a company that i’ve loved and supported for a very long time. B.d. Farm Paris Creek. I’ll try not to waffle on but these guys have been making a great range of organic and biodynamic milk and yogurt products for almost 20 years. Recently they have also started making a equally good range of hard and soft cheeses. If you want more information on them and their products, check out http://www.bdfarmpariscreek.com.au/.

So, with a belly full of cheese it was onto the Lobethal Road stand. Call me ignorant but i’d never heard of Lobethal Road wines before attending the tasting. Especially ignorant as one of my favourite Hill wineries, Tilbrook (more on them in another post but just quickly their new Sangiovese Cabernet blend is brilliant), is also from Lobethal in the Adelaide Hills. But I digress… Great Chardonnay is what we are looking for so we ask for a taste of their top of the line model, the Bacchant.

What's this? This is where your head'll be when you drink this Chardonnay!

What's this? This is where your head'll be when you drink this Chardonnay!

2008 Lobethal Road Wines Bacchant Chardonnay

Price :: $40 – 45

Cellar Potential :: Up to 6+ years

Score :: 96 Points

Music Match :: Sublime, uplifting wine deserves sublime and uplifting music.. Drink this wine while listening to Camille by Georges Delerue… If you don’t know Georges, he was a brilliant French Film composer that wrote over 350 scores for film and television. Make sure your seated when drinking the wine and listening to Camille, it is a heady and truly intoxicating experience.

The Summary :: Sometimes a wine you expect to be great turns out to be great. Sometimes a wine you expect to be great turns out to be disappointing. And sometimes along comes a wine of which you expect very little but delivers in spades. This is one of those wines. Uplifting aromas of honey, white peach, mandarins and a hint of oak. Near perfect balance and integrity on the palate with white peaches, citrus, oak and honey softly dancing on the palate. But that’s not the best bit. The texture. Oh, a joy to behold. Soft and silky it caresses the mouth in all the right places, making it almost a shame to swallow this wine. Is it a little pricey at $42? Not at all, at that price it’s damn good value. Do I still hate Chardonnay like I did six months ago? Not a chance. If we all tried Chardonnay this good the Anything But Chardonnay Club would be a lonely place.


…And now for something completely different. After more food treats (possibly the best smoked salmon, kingfish and prawns i’ve ever tasted from Harris Smokehouse in Hahndorf) it was off to sample the wines from Hahndorf Hill Winery. Tasted the whites, and sure they were agreeable and nice but the wine that really took me by surprise was their Rose. Deliciously fresh, dry as a dead dingo’s donger (like all good Rose) and totally unique. Unique because it is the only Rose in Australia made from the obscure grape varieties of Trollinger and Lemburger. Apparently these grapes are a little bit like David Hasselhoff’s singing… Big in Germany and Austria but pretty unpopular everywhere else! Anyways, the Rose is delicious and great value too. So put away your Rockford’s Alicante Bouchet and grab a bottle of this when it gets warm.

HHW Rose

HHW Rose

Price :: Around $19

Cellar Potential :: Don’t even think about it, drink it young and fresh!

Score :: 91 Points

Music Match :: This Rose is a deliciously dry delight, so it needs some deliciously dry music to match. With the wines German heritage you need some German music to really match this well. Dry German music doesn’t sound very appealing but one brilliant pop song fits the bill. It’s got to be the most popular Cold War-era protest song ever, 99 Luftballons by Nena.

The Summary :: Australia has been plagued for years by overly sweet Rose wines. But the tide is finally turning with drops like Hahndorf Hill Trollinger/Lemburger Rose. On the nose I got a blast of raspberries, strawberries, apples and marmalade. Many of these notes continued onto the palate with the berries dominating. Texturally this wine is silky smooth with great mouthfeel. It finishes bone dry, inviting another sip… Then another.. Then another… Dangerous but delicious summer barbie wine, ditch the Banrock Station White Shiraz or Rockford’s Alicante Bouchet and grab a bottle of this.