Tuesday, December 16, 2008

What's wrong with Hunter Semillon?

Hunter Valley Semillon takes a unique place in the world of wine. In particular as a mature wine, with its honey colour, it delivers a perfect match to tuna steak.

Initially, it were the wines of Tyrells, Lindemans and Rothbury which created its reputation. Tyrells is still around with a number of different brands, but the others fell by the wayside. The next wave included Petersons, Brokenwood, Briar Ridge. Their wines no longer create the excitement of 15 years ago. Currently Keith Tulloch and Thomas are highly praised.

Of the Semillons I drank over the last couple of years, most are somewhat fruity with a dull finish. They lack the acidity to go on for a long time and seem to be made for the show circuit to stand out and appeal at first sip. Yesterday, I had a 2005 Thomas Braemore Semillon, which is highly regarded, yet it displays these characteristics to a degree. What I am after is a crisp, linear, even steely lemon and lime taste, and a zesty, acidic finish. The 2007 Meerea Park Hell Hole I tried today, fits this bill, but not many others do - what a shame!

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