Wednesday, 10 August 2011

The Australian Wine Experience 9th August: The Harrow at Little Bedwyn

Trade and Consumer Tasting in association with Wine Australia and Decanter magazine
Following an anxious night watching the riots worsen on TV and twitter (and just one mile from my flat!), I was extremely glad to be on a train surrounded by fields and canals on my way to The Harrow. This peaceful setting seemed a world away from the madness taking hold over the streets of London. A beautiful sunny afternoon and quick walk along the canal helped me to put the past 48 hours out of my mind.
Roger and Sue at The Harrow were, as always, fantastic hosts and they had prepared a blind tasting of 7 whites and 6 reds for the trade and press.

There were some delicious wines for us to try:
Katnook Estate Chardonnay 1995 (sparkling)
Plantagenet Riesling 1998
Jasper Hill Riesling 1998
Lenswood Semillon 1998
Mosswood Semillon 1995
Mosswood Chardonnay 2000
Mount Mary Chardonnay 1996
Viña Tondonia Rioja 1973 (a red herring but delicious nonetheless)
Mosswood Cabernet Sauvignon 1996
Lakes Folly Cabernets 1999
E & E Black Pepper Shiraz 1996
Grange 1990
St Henri Shiraz Penfolds 1990
My personal favourites were the 1995 Mosswood Semillon (savoury, herbal, citrus fruit, fresh) and the E & E Black pepper Shiraz (strawberry, violets, very soft and elegant).

We freshened our palates with an Ancre Hills Sparkling rosé, made from 100% pinot noir and from the green hills of Monmouthshire in Wales! Wales isn’t well known for producing stunning wines (I can only say this because I am Welsh), but this rosé was truly delicious and surprised everybody. Delicate strawberry flavours dominate with a silky mouthfeel.
The consumer tasting started shortly afterwards and was split into several categories including Sparkling Wines, Decanter Star Studded Riesling, Decanter Star Studded Chardonnay and Light Summer Reds. We had a few wines in the tasting that all showed incredibly well:
Schild Estate Barossa Riesling 2009: Floral with citrus fruit flavours, crisp acidity and a wonderful balance. £16.50 per bottle
Schild Estate Barossa Chardonnay 2010: Tropical fruit aromas with stone fruits and melon on the palate. Elegant. £16.50 per bottle
Hay Shed Hill Chardonnay 2009: Fresh, lively with crisp, clean acidity with zesty citrus fruit flavours. £20.90 per bottle
Ten Minutes by Tractor 10X Chardonnay 2009: Lean and elegant in a true Burgundian style with beautiful fruit and a focused palate. £17.94 per bottle
Ten Minutes by Tractor McCutcheon Vineyard Pinot Noir 2008: Seamless with cherry and plum fruit, poise and purity. Focused. £61.15 per bottle
The food was as delicious as ever as Roger treated us all to a five-course meal. For me the lobster ‘fish finger’ and the roast beef on curried lentils stood out.

So thanks to Roger and Sue at the Harrow for a truly fantastic Australian wine experience and I look forward to my next visit!

Written by Claire Scott-Gall

1 comment:

  1. Wine can be quite delicious especially if you have the tongue for it but it is not always described as sweet. Now, sweet wine is actually more fruity than sweet. The most common of this kind are those that are made of fruits. For instance, there is sweet wine that is made from strawberries, from grapes and even from blueberries. Of course, there are other types of red wine that can be classified as sweet but are not primarily made from these fruits. In most cases, the right amounts of sugar is added through the fermentation process making have a distinct sweet taste that is different from the usual red.

    Wine Decanters Australia