Posts tagged ‘McWilliams’

Chateau Bellevue 2009 Bordeaux & McWilliams Regional Collection Coonawarra Shiraz 1999 – What i’m drinking at the time 11.12.2011

Continuing the French theme, we got some more Bordeaux today. Presenting….

Chateau Bellevue 2009 Bordeaux

Nat’s parents got this as a present today so lucky us. Retails for around $10, and screw top on a french bottle! Wow, times are changing. Looking at the label, it’s within the same category of wines as I have been drinking recently; the Cheval Noir and the Chateau Haut-Madrac. Randomly going on a running theme here shall we say.  This guy is again a Merlot dominate wine with Cabernet Sauvignon blend and at 13.5% alc./vol. Passed once through an aerator. Shall we taste?

Nose is pretty deep with black fruits, blackberries. A big lush nose with some oak, almost Barossa in style. The attack is lean, medium bodied with a nice mix of acidity and fruit. Lacks structure until it hits the mid palate where the tannins come in to balance out the acid and bring something to the mouthfeel. Finish is dry on the gums and very  long with some lime characteristics and a bit salty. Tastes haps better after more and more time in the glass, less oak and more smooth and fruit. Not much happening here but a nice tasting wine and reminds me of Penfolds bin 28. Initially I thought this was going to be crap but all things considered, I’m kinda impressed given the label. Don’t judge a book by its cover hey? Not a great wine but getter than most standard casual wines, and better than the CHeval Noir and Haut Madrac at a better price point. I would guess that this would be a $20-$25 dollar wine so it’s not without merit.

But wait, there’s more….

Mid writing this review, I had to drop some things off at parents house. My brother and his girlfriend was there and started shouting “Ken’s here! Another reason to open a bottle!” At 11.00pm I thought? You cannot be serious?! Apparently, Pol (brothers girlfriend) came back from her work Christmas function where that had unlimited drinks! (just the nonalcoholic kind…yeah…). My dad scrummaged around so I can’t let my family do all the heavy lifting, if I must I must. So if your still reading, we get a special guest of wine number 2.

McWilliams Regional Collection Coonawarra Shiraz 1999

Got a bit of ages to it too! 13.5% just like the previous. We aerated this into a decanter for about 15 mins? No justice but it was getting late sooo….Lets get right into it!

The nose brought me straight into middle earth (or New Zealand) with green and lush rolling hills. French oak is present with dried cranberries. Some initial sharp sourness made me gasp…hope its not vinegar! Attack is weird. It’s watery, background of tannin, well integrated fruit and acid. Balanced but feels unbalanced. Mid palate is cranberries and no increase or decrease in intensity of flavours from the initial attack. Some burnt wood and pineapple, the bits you get towards the skin. Finish is smooth light tannins, oak comes out to party here with vanilla notes. It’s a long long, very long finish with some apricot flavours you get at the seed, persimmon and leaves you with a very waxy mouth.

This feels like a matured wine, mellow and just chilling out. It has some complexity to it, solid mix of richness, smoothness and fruit flavours but does feel like it’s past its prime and wasn’t intended to taste this way. Bottle notes say its full bodied, cherry, spicy, plum and clove (which you get from the numb wax mouth). The fruit has faded into shadows and the supposed find grained tannins and spicy oak is a ghost. Not a bad effort, but again, nothing to write home about.

Sweet dreams!


McWilliams Shiraz 2002 and Pepperjack Cabernet Sauvignon 2009 – What I’m drinking last Wednesday 16.11.2011

What I’m drinking last Wednesday 2011.11.16

Went over to the parents as usual last Wednesday and got to sample 2 bottles today!

McWilliams Regional collection, Barossa Valley Shiraz 2002

Pepperjack Cabernet Sauvignon, Barossa 2009

We tried the McWilliams Shiraz first (14% alco). This guy goes for about $16 bucks and was decanted for around 2.5 hours. Straight up the nose is white pepper and spices with plums, very ripe plums to the point where their over ripe. There is some rose petals and floral notes in there also. On the palate, the attack is quite strong with a lot of sweetness and vanilla bits, guessing French/usa oak combo? Its spicy in the front and then flows into dark cherries, nice rounded mouth feel with a touch of green. Finish is long and nice, grippy tannins, definitely white pepper and a touch of heat from the alcohol.

Solid wine, definitely what you would expect from Barossa reds. Though not the style I like right now, it’s still a good solid drinking wine with bags of flavour. Good value for the price for sure.

Pepperjack came next. We opened the bottle and aerated it into a decanter for about 30 mins, a bit rushed cos it was a bit last minute. FYI, this guy is 13.5% alco. Sniffing this wine brought up starfruit. Yep, starfruit. Fresh little green bits also, some raw broccoli, not very sweet and some bits of tar/road/gravel in there. Definitely an interesting nose. The taste was a bit of a disappointment though. Flat of the attack, mid palate is spicy but bitter and flabby (not enough acidity to balance). There is a sweetness in the background, its integrated but not pronounced. There are also dry aspects to this wine. The acid comes in at the end but it’s astringent coupled with powdery tannins.

Not sure this is a good wine, could be a bit young. It is more complex than the McWilliams but not as pleasant to drink. I found it a bit unbalanced and too harsh in the mid and back end. Also, the alcohol comes through on this wine even though there is less alcohol in this than the previous. Not good. What I do like about this wine is it hides the presence of oak on the nose and palate. At $20, I think we can do much better.

Happy tastings!