How to organize a wine tasting at home


Perhaps, sometimes, not being able to visit the vineyards is not so bad after all.

Pinots from a single vineyard to taste at home

2018 Hurley Estate Pinot Noir (Mornington Peninsula), $ 50 and Hurley Garamond Pinot Noir 2018 (Mornington Peninsula), $ 85
Each year Kevin Bell and Tricia Byrnes bottle three pinots, one from each of the discrete vineyard blocks in Hurley. They also often bottle a Estate wine, a mixture of pinot from the three sites. In the blind tastings, I constantly choose the Garamond, from the freshest and eastern block, and planted only the pinot clone MV6, as the best, the most complex and the most worthy of the cellar, and the Estate like the one that most of me want to drink now. And that’s what happened this year: the Estate 2018 is pretty and scented, pale, ethereal, fruity with rosehip, delicate, and the 2018 Garamond, while deceptively translucent and floral to look and smell, has more substance on the tongue, with a surprising hangover of earth and hints of licorice and spices.

2019 Giant Steps Spring Pinot Noir (Yarra Valley), $ 65 and 2019 Giant Steps Fatal Shore Pinot Noir (Coal River Valley), $ 75
The Primavera vineyard is located in Woori Yallock, in the cool volcanic hills of the southern Yarra Valley. The Nocton vineyard, where grapes were grown for the Fatal Shore pinot, is planted in the calcareous and sandstone soils of the Coal River Valley near Hobart. The vineyards are approximately the same age, have a similar clonal blend, and the wines were made almost identically: half of the grapes were de-stemmed, half fermented as whole bunches, and then matured in barrels (25 percent new). for eight months, and yet they couldn’t be more different. Primavera is a vibrant, juicy, crisp red fruit, a cascade of raspberries and blueberries, and a fine, powdery tannin, while Fatal Shore is denser, darker, and plush, with black cherries and stuffed tannins.

2018 Oakridge Local Vineyard Series Henk Pinot Noir (Yarra Valley), $ 44, and 2018 Oakridge 864 Pinot Noir Aqueduct (Yarra Valley), $ 90
The Henk vineyard is also planted in the fresh volcanic soils of Woori Yallock, not far from Primavera, but there are subtle differences in Oakridge’s winemaking approach: grapes picked a little earlier, fewer whole clusters, less new oak, and a little more than barrel time The Henk is a charming, round and seductive pinot with plum and blackberry seed flavors, leading to a long and tasty finish with hints of dried mushrooms. The Aqueduct, made from a block of MV6 pinot clone in Henk’s vineyard, is less aromatic and eager to please initially, but as you rotate it in the glass it opens up wonderfully to reveal a more intense scented bramble fruit, followed by robust and spicy tannins. and a fluid and persistent finish. Wonderful.