WINE TALK

Wangaratta Chronicle - North East Regional Extra - - FRONT PAGE - with Anita McPher­son

YEARS ago I de­cided that if cer­tain plants didn’t sur­vive in my gar­den, or were go­ing to be too fussy, then I’d sim­ply get rid of them. Life’s too short to be run­ning around guard­ing some­thing from frost one sea­son, only to shield them with shade cloth the next, in the hope of keep­ing them alive and happy. If you can’t stand the heat, get out of my gar­den, be­cause I don’t want lit­tle teepees ev­ery­where and there are other species that ac­tu­ally love my place and will thrive there. So con­grat­u­la­tions to Ben Clifton at Amulet Vine­yard and Win­ery for hav­ing the pa­tience to per­sist with Bar­bera, which he says has been giv­ing him grief since he first planted it in 1999. The high main­te­nance grapes have very thin skin, which means if there is late rain dur­ing vin­tage the sen­si­tive souls will turn up their toes. But it seems per­sis­tence pays off and the 2015 has made it all worth­while. The wine has a very dark, bur­gundy colour and vi­brant fruity aroma of black cher­ries with a hint of spice. There’s juici­ness to the flavour, loaded with punchy cherry and plum, but with an earthy back­drop. It would make an ideal part­ner to game like veni­son or roo, the fruiti­ness and length of flavour com­ple­ment­ing any suc­cu­lent meat. We’re so lucky Ben has more pa­tience than me. Try the range at the cel­lar door in Beech­worth where you can en­joy lunch on the week­end, or go to www.amuletwines.com.au

with ANITA

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