Well, we say "retires" but it's more of a sideways move really. We have followed Rolf Binder for many years, entranced as we are with his magical touch as a winemaker in producing the characteristic wines of the Barossa Valley whilst maintaining a degree of control frequently missed by others.
Rolf's father (another Rolf) set the business up in 1955 but with the 3rd generation of the family moving in other directions Rolf decided to sell up to Acolade, Australia's biggest winemaking company. Sadly that means a natural end to both the spectacular Heinrich Shiraz/Mataro/Grenache and Rolf's Selection Chardonnay. Just a few bottles of each remain for anyone wanting to grab them.
Fellow Barossa producers Thorn-Clark have moved to a different UK Importer so that means that Shotfire Quartage will also come to a natural end with us. Again, just a few bottles remain.
The good news though is that this has provided us with the perfect opportunity to give our Australian selection a major re-vamp, and we have some exciting new discoveries to unveil...
Firstly, Rolf has not left us completely since he still retains his two other winemaking hats of Magpie Estate and J.J.Hahn. We continue to list a couple of Magpie Estate wines in the form of Wishbone Shiraz Grenache and The Black Craft Shiraz though both are out of stock with the UK Importer and we have no date for their return yet so there will be a break in supply once the few bottles of each that we currently have in stock have gone. But we have more to tell you about...
New Southern Stars
Firstly, a red and white from Capel Vale in Western Australia under their Debut label. Regular listeners to Test Match Special will appreciate that the Aussie pronunciation of "Debut" (frequently demonstrated by Jim Maxwell) is D'boo" and we trust you will give this a go if ordering in person or on the phone... We have added their Sauvignon/Semillon and Margaret River Cabernet/Merlot.
Also joining us are a pair of wines from the Bird In Hand Winery based in Adelaide Hills whose Sparkling Pinot Noir we have sold for a while now. We have added their Two In The Bush Chardonnay and Two In The Bush Shiraz. Adelaide Hills is littered with old gold mines and Two In The Bush is the name of one of the old mineshafts.
Next, to McLaren Vale where we simply couldn't resist a wine from Coriole called "Molly's Garden", a Shiraz/Sangiovese blend that offers a real point of difference and a wonderfully savoury edge.
Finally, there is Reginald Shiraz/Cabernet from J.J.Hahn where Rolf Binder's magic wand is still at work. It shows too.
Australian Taster Six Pack
Six new Aussies then, so that gives us the perfect opportunity to pop one bottle of each into a box to create an Australian Taster Six Pack and knock a £5 off the total cost for a short while. Click here for details.
Wine Tasting Dates
We have tentatively made pencil bookings with Ipswich Town Football Club to hold two tastings this year on the following dates:
Thursday 19th May
Thursday 17th November
More details in due course.