Bottlers for Dad
Tyrrell's 2018 Vat 8 Shiraz-Cabernet; $90. 5 stars (out of six).
DESPITE lockdowns, curfews, masks, virus testing and jabs, Father's Day will still happen next weekend. Sadly COVID-19 means many people won't get to see dear old Dad or shop for a gift for him - but wine is an answer. There's still time to log onto to a winery cellar door or a wine shop and arrange a delivery of a bottle or bottles. And, if the budget can manage it, an exceptional gift like the M Burton or this shiraz-cabernet sauvignon blend. The Vat 8 has 14% alcohol, bright garnet hues, forest floor scents and vibrant blackcurrant front-palate flavour. The middle shows mulberry, rhubarb, mint and vanillin oak and the finish earthy tannins. Order on tyrrells.com.au or by telephoning 4993 7000. Drink with osso bucco and cellar 10 years.
Exceptional shiraz blend
M Burton Shiraz 1; $150. 5.5 stars (out of six).
The Austere label and cork seal signal the trail-blazing nature of this red from 2018 and 2019 Canberra Region Murrumbateman grapes. Crafted by Gundog Estate owner-winemaker Matt Burton, it's a mix of five batches of shiraz - four open-tank-fermented from destemmed and crushed must, some with whole bunches and others whole berries. The fifth has fruit pressed straight into barrel and matured on skins for 12 months. The result is a 14% alcohol, purple-tinted magenta, fruitcake-scented feast of a wine. The front palate displays rich, ripe plum flavour, the middle palate cherry, bramble jelly, spice, peppermint chocolate and mocha oak and a finish of ferric tannins. Great with beef burgundy and cellar 15 years. Get it on gundogestate.com.au.
An acceptable choice
NV Rose, McGuigan 0% ABV; 750ml; $10.99.
McGuigan Zero is worth drinking. It is crisp, not cloying, and a good substitute for an alcoholic drink. First, it doesn't taste bad - good, in fact. If you sat on the deck in summer and sipped it, you wouldn't immediately conclude it was anything other than a more-than-acceptable drink. It lacks the buzz of alcohol, but it would - because it lacks the alcohol. I sound as though I am damning it with faint praise. I'm not. I had prejudged McGuigan Zero. The point of alcoholic drinks is . . . they are alcoholic. That's the pleasure, the buzz. But if you're in a situation where drinking alcohol is off the table, this rose is well worth a try.
Yuzu Stout; Fury & Son; Keilor Park, VIC; 7%; $7.
Thomas Malthus, after whom the term Malthusianism is named, was a fear monger of the highest order. A real-life Chicken Little, he used complex models based on exponential growth patterns to claim that the world's population was out of control and so we're all going to die due to food shortages. Biologist Paul Ehrlich once said, in 1969, that England wouldn't exist by the year 2000. Were I a Malthusian peddler of fear spells and menacing models, I'd declare that using yuzu lemon to make a stout would render a catastrophic clash of flavours resulting in total palate annihilation, but I'm not that brazen. It works, is tasty, and actually quite refreshing.
READ MORE FOOD & WINE:
- On the cover: Here's to you, dad: ideas for a foodie's Father's Day
- Morsels: A special taste of Otis at home
- Morsels: A taste of Australia with a new gin
- Lockdown Kitchen: Loving your lockdown leftovers
- Kitchen Garden: Tips for a climate-wise garden
- Recipes: No time to wait? Recipes for the busy vegetarian
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