Langton’s – a tasting of top Aussie kit

Langtons is the leading wine auction house in Australia and produces a classification of top Aussie kit based on auction performance over five years or more – a barometer of what’s hot and has a consistently good track record. The classification includes the following vinous gems:

Crawford River Riesling 1994 – impressive, with the merest whiff of petrol on the nose giving away its eleven years; the fine boned palate is chiselled with minerals and cut with pithy lime flavours; still plenty of go.

Leeuwin Estate Art Series Chardonnay 2001
– an excellent example of a rich and ripe chardonnay with white peach, fig, toasted hazlenuts and smoky, well-integrated oak.

Giaconda Chardonnay 1996 – deep gold with developed nutty ripe fruit; beguiling style, subtle yet full.

Cullen Diana Madeline Cabernet-Merlot 1999
– ripe mulberry with hints of chocolate on the nose lead onto a beautifully balanced palate with great depth of red and black fruits surrounding a backbone of fine, ripe tannin. With its lively mouthfeel, the finish is dry rather than fruity – very poised.

Parker Coonawarra Estate Terra Rossa First Growth Cabernet-Merlot 1999 – classic developed Coonawarra nose redolent of meat pan-juices and iron/blood; these follow through on the palate though there is a solid core of primary fruit with spicy (liquorice) blackcurrant. Long, fine finish with cedar and cigar box notes.

Moss Wood Cabernet Sauvignon 1987
– mature, dry and elegant with leafy blackcurrant, cedar and bay leaf flavours and a fine, persistent finish.

Kay Brothers Amery Vineyards Block 6 Shiraz 1998 – smoky nose with bonfire toffee suggesting super-ripe fruit, though the palate is notable for its dry, savoury palate with chewy tannins and a broad minerally seam.

Rockford Basket Press Shiraz 1998 – Aussie-tastic nose and palate, this is choc-full of malty mulberry and plum fruit with eucalyptus and kid glove leather; super-supple and flashy – a hedonistic drop.

Clonakilla Shiraz-Viognier 1998
– a great contrast to the Rockford with its perfumed nose and intense silky palate. Lovely and lively with exotic lychee accompanying the Shiraz fruit.

Brokenwood Graveyard Vineyard Shiraz 1998 – the fruit is distinctly blackcurranty like a Rhone Cornas with Hunter Valley linseed oil and mellow, gamier undertones. Minerally finish, very good.

Sarah Ahmed
The Wine Detective
October 2005

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