Wednesday, March 20, 2019

McLaren Vale White Wines

Back on home soil, I am spending a couple of days in McLaren Vale, after a long absence. The focus here is on red wines, but what about whites?

Almost everybody here has realised that it is too hot for our main white varieties of Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Riesling or Semillon. However, I have come across a couple of worth while white wines where the emphesis is not on fruit, but on texture.

Oliver’s Taranga is betting big on the thick skinned Fiano, a variety at home inland of Naples, with more than 10ha of plantings. The 2018 Fiano has an aroma of cloves, and is nutty and chalky in character. Good natural acidity helps in this climate. This is not a bad food wine ((90 points).

More exciting is the  2018 Yangarra Blanc. It includes a number of white Rhone varieties, in particular Grenache Blanc and Clairette. This is a fresh wine, but not so much with a citrus character, rather with stone fruit flavours. The main feature is the smoothness along the palate (92 points). I liked this a lot.

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