Viognier is a close genetic relative of Shiraz, and it grows exceedingly well in McLaren Vale. That’s why it was a finalist for Winestate Magazine “Alternative White Variety of the year” in the December 2021 awards! It has been made in a fresh, fruity style with no oak. Viognier has abundant aromatics, such as peach, lime and floral notes. The palate has good acidity with great flavours and texture. Drink it with shellfish, oily fish, crustaceans, creamy pasta and light pork dishes. It can also handle Thai spice.
Winemakers have loved Grenache from McLaren Vale for a very long time but shaking the Tawny Port and light bodied red stigma took some effort. Now it’s fast becoming the hero of McLaren Vale reds. This Grenache / Shiraz / Mataro blend is a simplified version of the French Cotes Du Rhone wines. These varieties complement each other extremely well adding further depth and complexity. Its bright fruit flavours and medium body pairs well with anything from lamb chops to pizza.
Tempranillo is a variety widely grown in Spain, and incidentally blends very well with Grenache. There are many climate similarities with Spain, and as our Summer temperatures are increasing, varieties that can handle heat are becoming much more important. Tempranillo needs good temperatures in the growing season to ripen well. The added bonus is that the fruit flavours become ripe at a lower sugar level, leading to a lower alcohol percentage in the finished wine. Typically it’s 1% less than other reds such as Shiraz and Cabernet. With quite a fruity and fleshy palate, this wine will pair well with roast lamb, bbq, pepperoni pizza and spaghetti bolognese.