Saturday, November 1, 2008

Some interesting wines from Mitolo

I'm a bit tired at the moment as I have been out for the last three nights on the trot and I can't hack this burning the candle at both ends stuff any more. We have had a busy week workwise as well as we are getting ready for the Wine Fair next Thursday which takes quite a lot of work.

Anyway, the good news is that I had a couple of interesting wines during the week. On Wednesday, we went to McCormacks in Mounttown which has re-vamped the menu. It's really nice food and great value. Unfortunately, the wine list is still brutal (it's all from one supplier, Febvre) and the only vaguely drinkable red on it was the Conde de Valdemar Rioja Crianza which was fine. The couple of pints of Guinness were nice as well.

We fared rather better wine wise on Thursday as we were invited out to dinner in the Merrion with Ben Glaetzer (well renowned Oz winemaker). Ben does 2 ranges of wines - his own winery in Barossa makes a fine range of wines ranging from the heartland range to the famous and impossible-to-get Amon Ra. It was his other range, Mitolo, that we focussed on on Thursday, however. This is a joint venture between Ben and Frank Mitolo in Mclaren Vale and the wines are really very good.

We started off with Jester Rose, made from Sangiovese which was as you would expect - fresh and fruity.

Then we had the Jester Cabernet Sauvignon which has very nice Cabernet fruit, maybe a tad astringent, but quite nice.
Jester Shiraz was nicer, round and plump with a silky texture and tons of fruit.

Reiver Shiraz is their only offering from the Barossa and is an excellent example.
GAM Shiraz from McLaren Vale was a softer style, maybe a bit more elegant.
Savitar Shiraz was huge, concentrated and delicious with excellent balance and length.
Serpico Cabernet is made using dried grapes so is like an Australian Cabernet Amarone if that makes any sense. On first sip, it is pure Cabernet, albeit very concentrated. Once it opens up, though, the more complex dried fruit character comes through. This was very interesting winemaking and, all in all, a really nice evening.

The food and service in the Merrion was excellent, as usual.

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