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If you have been living in a bunker for the past quarter, you might have missed the news about Australia. The Land Down Under is experiencing a bushfire epidemic of proportions never before seen. Growing increasingly fierce since September, these fires have spread throughout each of the nation’s six states, with the worst concentrations in Victoria and New South Wales, major wine growing regions of Australia. While Australia is predominantly known for its outstanding Shiraz, that varietal is truly only about 25% of wine that is produced in the country. Chardonnay and Cabernet are increasingly produced, as are many varietals familiar to the average wine buyer. What may be a surprise however, is that some of the best Pinot Noir Australia has to offer is newly available in the U.S. Market.
Who Are Handpicked Wines?
Handpicked Wines is an Australian wine label that may surprise you. Their portfolio does not encompass a single growing region, i.e. a California winemaker whose wines are from strictly various vineyards in Napa Valley. Instead, the small winemaking team crafts wines from the prolific wine regions of Australia and New Zealand. Making wine in the style characteristic of each regions terroir, the intimate team is led by Peter Dillon, Director of Winemaking and Jonathon Mattick, Assistant Winemaker.
As of today, Handpicked Wines offers wines from 20 of the top wine regions in Australia and New Zealand. That is why it is so easy to find some of the best Pinot Noir Australia has to offer through Handpicked Wines.
Where in the U.S. can I find some of the Best Pinot Noir Australia has to Offer ?
Currently, the only place to find Handpicked Wines is on Wine.com. Well, that’s the only place in the United States to find Handpicked Wines. I highly recommend purchasing a few bottles of the different Pinot Noirs, especially if you are considering hosting a blind wine tasting party at home. Should you find yourself in Sydney, Australia, you need not traipse around the continent to try all the different wines of the Handpicked Portfolio. Visit their tasting room at Urban Cellar Door as a one off visit, or as part of a multi-site urban wine tour.
How Do Handpicked Wines Pinot Noirs Compare to One Another?
I like to share what my personal tasting notes are for the wines I taste and compare, even if they are just those at a sporting event. These are by no means the only flavors or characteristics that are within the bottle, but are meant to highlight the general flavor and structure of the wine.
|#1 Handpicked Wines Collection 2014 Pinot Noir: |
|#2 Handpicked Wines Collection |
2015 Pinot Noir:
|#3 Handpicked Wines Regional Selections|
2017 Pinot Noir: Yarra Valley
|#4 Handpicked Wines Collection 2016 Pinot Noir: Mornington Peninsula|
|Garnet with an orangish rim||Garnet in color with an oranging rim||Ruby in color||Garnet in Color|
|On the Nose: Sour cherry, tomato, mesquite wood chips, baking spices||A nose of Cranberry, underripe raspberry, peet moss, cut flowers, forest floor, wet leather, saddle, barnyard||On the nose: Cherry, cranberry, a bit of a barnyard characteristic||A nose of leather, mushroom, cranberry, tart cherry, and some eucalyptus and menthol|
|Dry on the palate, high acid, mid-weight body, balanced tannins||Bone dry, high acid, smooth as silk tannins||Dry on the palate, somewhat weighty with chewy tannins||Bone dry, austere and a bit weighty on the palate-needs more time to decant than the other three tried|
|On the tongue: Strawberry, milk chocolate, tobacco, rubber||Tastes of red fruit, sweet tobacco, smokey cedar, mushroom/savory note||On the tongue: red fruit, a sulfur note||A leather and herbacious character really comes to play on the palate|
|My Suggested Food Pairing: Peking Style Duck||Suggested Food Pairing: Michigan Morel Mushroom Risotto||Great Food Pairing: Charcuterie Board||Suggested Food Pairing: Duck and Pork Sausage|
|Aged in 40% new French Oak for 11 months||Aged in 30% new French Oak for 10 months||Varied Aging: 10 months in a mixture of new/old French barrels and French oak staves||Aging notes not currently available|
|MSRP: $59.99 per 750 mL bottle||MSRP: $59.99 per 750 mL bottle||MSRP: $28.99 per 750 mL bottle||MSRP: $65.99 per 750mL bottle|
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