Great rewards for th ose wh o stick it out
MOST Australians understand that the hours worked by people in the wine and food industries are both unenviable and horrendous.
For those few in the industries that go the extra yards, though, the rewards can be quite extraordinary.
On the wine side, for example, if there is time available from your work schedule, there are invitations to exciting tastings every week and on occasion several for a particular day.
Among the great tastings held at wineries this year was the annual 20 wine Cullen International Chardonnay tasting of the 2010 vintage.
On my card the Penfolds Bin A (18.7 points) topped the first bracket, the Penfolds Yattarna (18.7pts) topped the second and the Cullen ‘Kevin John’ (18.8pts), the Giaconda (18.9pts), the Leeuwin Estate Art series (19pts) and the Blain-Gagnard Batard Montrachet Grand Cru (19pts) were the pick of the final bracket and overall.
Shortly afterwards at the Annual Cape Mentelle International Caber- net tasting of 20 of the world’s finest from 2011, the Cape Mentelle Cabernet Sauvignon was the only Australian in my six highest pointed wines – all at 18.9pts or above.
The others were Chateau Pichon-Longueville Baron, Chateau Palmer and Chateau Leoville-LasCases from Bordeaux and Ornellaia from Tuscany and Far Niente from the Napa Valley.
Penfolds hosted two great tastings this year just prior to the launch of each of their super premium red and white wines – the first mostly from the 2009 and then the second, the 2010 vintage.
Despite some commentary, the 2009 Grange is very good wine.
The 2011 Yattarna is just a great wine and… oh yes, the 1964 grange was a highlight! The 2010 vintage reds lived up to all expectations.
The 2012 Yattarna Chardonnay and the Bin 707 Cabernet Sauvignon are just great Australian examples of their varieties and I have no hesitation in placing the 2010 Grange as amongst the greatest ever.
Penfolds’ wine-making has never been this good and senior winemaker Peter Gago will go down as both Penfold’s greatest winemaker and as Australian wine’s greatest international image creator – ever.
Cape Mentelle Estate director Cameron Murphy.