by Aaryn Lambert

Five Great Wines

Pierre Gimonnet & Fils Brut – Cuis 1er Cru (Champagne, France) $70

The Gimonnet family has been producing terroir focused wines for many years, with all their 25 hectares of vineyards exclusively planted with Chardonnay. The Cuis is a Premier Cru vineyard that has produced a richly textured, creamy Champagne with intense toasted brioche, peach and apple flavours and aromas, and, then racy, mineral acidity to freshen up the palate. A complex and delicious wine to start any occasion.

Domaine du Pegau Cuvée Reservée Châteauneuf-du-Pape AC 2007 (Rhône, France) $110

Châteauneuf-du-Pape is much loved for its intensity, warmth, richness and boldness of flavour. The Pegau Cuvée Reservée delivers everything you would expect and more with an intense nose of ripe raspberry, clove, strawberry jam, earth and complex notes of garrigue (the wild herbs of the southern Rhône). The palate is rich, full and lush with raspberry jam, mixed berries, earth, plum, graphite and roasted thyme. As the wine evolves in the glass, its complexity deepens and the finish lingers long on the palate.

Pertimali Brunello di Montalcino DOCG 2004 (Tuscany, Italy) $105

Brunello is the name of a superior clone of the famed Tuscan grape Sangiovese. Grown in the warm, dry climate around the town of Montalcino, the Brunello grape produces many stunning wines. The great 2004 vintage has produced a wine that is subtle but complex on the nose with intriguing and beautiful aromas of leather, clove, dried cherry, charred meat, marzipan and floral and orange zest notes. The complexity continues on to the palate which is intense, medium-full bodied and structured with tannin and acidity to develop for many years in the cellar.

Domenico Clerico Ciabot Mentin Ginestra Barolo DOCG 2004 (Piemonte, Italy) $142

Domenico Clerico combines modern techniques with great vineyard sites to produce Barolo’s that are approachable when young yet have the structure to develop for many years. This wine from the Monforte d’Alba vineyard of Ginestra is fragrant with beautiful aromas of liquorice, vanilla, spice, almond, plum and burlap. The palate defies the subtle beauty of the nose with its intense power – full in body, tannin and acidity and very long and persistent. Flavours of dried cherry, charred meat, pepper and spice linger on a very long palate. Can cellar for 15+ years.

Henschke Mount Edelstone Shiraz 2005 (Eden Valley, Australia) $140

Henschke is one of the top names in Australian wine. The Mount Edelstone vineyard differs from many of the blockbuster Australian Shirazes, due to its higher elevation in the Eden Valley, away from the heat of the Barossa Valley floor. The result is a wine that is still immensely flavourful and concentrated but with a more complex range of flavours and aromas. The 2005 vintage produced excellent growing conditions, the 90 year old vines delivering aromas of damson plum, blueberry, blackberry and complex floral and gamy notes combined with well integrated oak. The palate is full and structured with mixed berry and plum combined with hints of clove and eucalyptus. The finish is long and rich with the concentrated fruit promising a great future for cellaring.

Did you know?

How long can a wine age? In order to mature and develop complex flavours and aromas, a wine needs two things – concentrated flavours to preserve and something to preserve it. The flavour concentration you can taste by the intensity of flavours in a young wine. The preserving comes from either acidity and/or tannin in the wine. Both are necessary for a wine to develop into something complex and special.

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