If you’ll excuse the pun, Brown Magpie wines tend to fly under the radar even in Australia. They have an extremely loyal following in Geelong and that’s where most of their wines get sold, but it’s not a well-known brand in other parts of Australia. Tiger Wines is the only distributor they have outside of Australia so you get to see what few others do elsewhere.
Some of you purchased this wine back in March 2015 when it was first released at A$40, but I purchased this stock only last year when it was re-released at A$60. Hence the jump in price here to S$73.
Halliday suggests it should be at least 5 years before opening, ie. 2018, so you should still put it away for another year if you have the patience.
From my memory of drinking this wine, it is a big pinot, not unlike in style to the pinots that come from Brian Franklin at Apsley Gorge. And like Apsley Gorge, a big decant is highly recommended.
2016 Mewstone Tasmania Chardonnay – 12 btls – S$74 – Campbell Mattinson 94
2016 Mewstone Tasmania Pinot Noir – 12 btls – $74 – Campbell Mattinson 95
2016 Hughes & Hughes Tasmania Pinot Noir – 12 btls – $54 – Campbell Mattinson 93
During my many trips to the East Coast of Tasmania, I’d driven past Gala Estate without giving it a second thought. I was usually on my way to catch up with Freycinet Vineyards further down the road or Apsley Gorge at Bicheno. Gala Estate is in the town of Cranbrook which literally lives up to the old saying “blink and you’ll miss it”.
What caught my attention, and prompted a visit in April, was the awards that Gala Estate had started winning, especially Trophy Gold and Best Red Wine of the Show for their 2013 Gala Estate “Constable Amos” Pinot Noir at the 2016 Tassie Wine Show. I met with Adam and Grainne at the cottage cellar door, and was very impressed but slightly worried by their strategy. Impressed, because they have a very clear plan that they want to sell as much of their wine as possible direct to the end consumer. That means cellar door and wine club members, and very little left over for trade. Worried, because I thought I might not get any wine for my Singapore customers.
In the end, Adam & Grainne concluded that my approach is strongly aligned with theirs, so I was able to secure 2 cases of the Constable Amos (now all gone), and a tiny batch of this and another Riesling. It’s becoming increasingly clear that if one wants wines from boutique, and even mid-size producers in Tasmania, one has to visit them. Oh well, I’ll just have to keep doing that!
This 2014 Late Harvest Riesling scored a Gold medal at the 2016 Tasmanian Wine Show. It’s a 375ml bottle.
I may be able to get more, but right now, this is all I’ve got.
For the record, the alcohol is 9.4%