2010 Kalleske Florentine Single Vineyard Chenin Blanc

A classy wine harvested from low yielding mature single block Chenin Blanc vines at the Kalleske's property in the Barossa Valley. Named after the first daughter of founder Johann Georg Kalleske who migrated to Australia from Prussia in 1838, the Florentine is entirely wild yeast vinified, half fermented in a mix of Russian and Hungarian oak hogsheads with the rest in tanks. The wine that has been certified organic / biodynamic.    

The 2010 vintage is straw yellow in colour. Intriguing aromas of lemon curd, honeysuckle and cut green apple followed by notes of kerosene and barrel oak. There's a creamy almost oily texture to the palate supported by a line of crisp citrus acidity. Enough components to start a fire ! Some spice and mineral character at the back end that remain on to a lingering dry finish. A layered, generously flavoured, medium-bodied example of an underrated variety. Recommended. 

Source: Retail Purchase. Alcohol: 12.0%. Closure: Screwcap. Price: $19.00. Rating: 91+ Points.

2010 Lark Hill Canberra District Gruner Veltliner

Given as a Christmas present and inadvertently left in the cellar until recently. Strange as I'm onto these emerging varieties pronto. Despite my reservations as to its viability, it had shown signs of graceful ageing, which the variety can do. Moreover, the reviews of Australian Gru's are often of current vintages, rarely of ones with a few years under their belt and this one didn't disappoint after some aeration. 

This hallmark and widely-planted Austrian variety whose genetic parents are Traminer and the obscure variety St. Georgener-Rebe was pioneered in Australia by the certified biodynamic Lark Hill Winery after Jancis Robinson M W identified their high-altitude vineyards in 2002 as the perfect terroir for its planting. Their first vintage of G V in 2009 was also the first one produced in Australia. There is a bullish forecast now too that the Adelaide Hills is the go-to region for future production of quality fruit with its good ripening days and cold nights.

Golden green straw hues to this dry wine. Immediately, intriguing fig, lime and tobacco aromas. Expect a rich layer of honey, minerality, lemon, nuts and a feint creaminess to the palate. An aged Chardonnay or Riesling comes to mind. There is an oily texture underpinned by the Gru's hallmark acidity, which is peppery and spicy. Full-bodied but close to being fat, maybe too many Big M's while in the cellar ! Complex and rich with a tangy aftertaste. Exciting alternative to the Sav Blancs and P G's of this world. This is more than some trendoid, fly-by-night curiosity but will become the future big thing in whites.

Source: Gift. Alcohol: 12.5%. Closure: Screwcap. Price: $45.00. Rating: 91 Points.