7.03am, Tuesday 28th June, Royal Street, East Perth, Western Australia
It’s a wild and windy old start to the day over here in Perth. There’s a storm warning out. The temperature outside is plumetting – I know because I just ventured next door to Baa Baa the brekky spot for a coffee – and the sky looks badly black, blue and bright green bruised – like it just took a big punch from Joel ‘2 Guns’ Casey. (The pride of Townsville is ranked 3rd in the Light Heavyweight division by the Australian National Boxing Federation. Check the blog from May 22nd “You’ll never guess what I saw in Townsville last night”.) I’ll have to get this post done in a hurry, as the boys at the cafe reckon we’ll lose power with the gale force winds and squalls predicted. Thank goodness I flew in yesterday!
Now let’s get to where we were last night.
We kicked off our “Yalumba Visits Perth” Week with a Rare & Fine masterclass at Your Shout Liquor in Mt Lawley. Neil runs Your Shout and has decorated the shop in a style that I’d call ‘retro eccentric’, but I really like it – right down to the bright blue pin lights in the grapevine up on the wall, the ’70s filament lights, and of course the Elvis clock. He also has a severely staunch consumer wine club, and they do a great program of regular tastings with visiting and local winemakers. And when you do a tasting here, it’s not just a quick run-through of aroma and palate dissection – you need to get into a bit of depth because these palates are enquiring as a group!
The other top thing about tastings here is that Neil puts together antipasto platters with savoury, cheese, sweet and fruit flavours – so you really get to properly showcase the wines that you put on. Here’s what I mean – the local Italian deli meat plate with salamis, pepperoni, mortadella and ham – and the antipasto combo. From the top – local olive oil and balsamic vinegar with – going clockwise – pickled octopus & artichokes, dolmades & chilli soybeans, marinated fetta & semi dried tomatoes, freshly shelled prawns, with chilli olives in the middle.
We worked through:
- 2005 Pewsey Contours Riesling
- 2008 Yalumba FDW 7C Adelaide Hills Chardonnay
- 2008 Yalumba Virgilius Viognier
- 2007 Yalumba Menzies individual vineyard Coonawarra Cabernet
and the Cabernet Shiraz treble of:
as well as the
and finished with the sweet sticky flourish of the
This lineup really gave folks an interesting insight into our Yalumba wine world, with the regions of the Barossa, Adelaide Hills, Eden Valley, Coonawarra and Wrattonbully represented. It also crossed into in-depth Cabernet Shiraz blend country, and with the 2002 The Reserve teetering right on the transition from primary fruit to secondary development tobacco – it’s a treat to show how the great Australian traditional blend ages. These days, 2002 is a serious back vintage! Also noted is The 2006 Octavius moving a little quicker at present than The 2006 Signature, with the Shiraz showing not only fruit lift volume on the nose, but real density and length on the palate.
And for the finishing sweet flourish – nice to see the surprise and delight on the faces of the tasters as they tried the 2009 FSW8B Botrytis Viognier from Wrattonbully. We scored a few converts last night to sweet wines, as they don’t need to be gluggy and cloying. And it takes a pretty bouncy memorable sticky to follow those three Cabernet Shiraz wines and The Octavius.
The storm has just hit, the lights are flickering, and the rain is belting in horizontally on the glass! I’m going to finish right now so I don’t lose this. Thanks Neil and all the folks in the Your Shout wine tasting brigade for having us back – special mention to a couple of my favourites the personal trainers who look after the Navy here – Nick & Lawrie. And thanks to Byron – one of our men who look after Yalumba here in Perth for making it all happen … and we’ll see you same time next year when we do a dinner for you all at one of Neil’s favourite restaurants. That will be one big memorable late night out – don’t miss it !
What a lovely ‘welcome to town’ folks – even if Jacki and I will be trying to run around today and tonight in the teeth of a gale!