2015 – A Year in Review

January 18, 2016

Take a trip down the aisles and find the new releases that made us do a double-take in 2015. Here are the innovative new drops that tantalized our taste buds through four seasons, each deserving of a place in your glass.

Bubbles to begin

Sorriso Prosecco

Made from the Glera grape, Prosecco is the ultimate party starter. Fresh and crisp, with lovely fruitiness, Prosecco was the hottest wine of the year.

Georg Jensen Sparkling

Made with design at its heart, the Heemskerk sparkling wines need no introduction; however they now have an even more sophisticated package. Gorgeous inside and out.

Moutard Rose Champagne

From the slopes of La Côte des Bar in the southern reaches of Champagne comes this beautiful bubbling Rosé. Rosé champagne is seen as a rarity among the sea of white wines, and this classic style is the perfect partner with smoked salmon on blinis, the perfect hors d’oeuvre to get any party started.

Playful Rosé for partying

Squealing Pig Rosé  

Made from Pinot Noir, this bright and exuberant Rosé is the perfect poolside wine, or perhaps served with a plate of charcuterie. It has a little residual sugar, so it will also pair well with spicy food and chalky cheeses.

Tamburlaine Wine Lovers Rosé

Rosé is such a terrific category as the only rules it needs to follow is that it must be pink. It can be made from any red grape you can think of, and the styles are wonderfully varied. This one is made from Grenache, which gives it a gorgeous fresh berry character and a beautiful round mouthfeel.

Aromatic light and bright whites

Alba Albarino

From what is often called green Spain for its proximity to the Atlantic Ocean, the Albarino grape delivers intensity and power. These wines are somewhere between a Riesling and a viognier, showing fruit weight, but also bring thrilling acid to the glass. This one is perfect with a sardine escabeche.

The Crafty Punter Riesling

Made by Riesling master Neil Pike, the Crafty Punter is an ode to his father Edgar, who had a penchant for the ponies. As you would expect, this is classic Clare Riesling, floral with citrus and acid to allow a few years in the cellar too.

Atiru Sauvignon Blanc

From the Awatere sub-region of Marlborough in New Zealand comes another pitch-perfect Sauvignon Blanc. There is a reason these wines dominate the wine world, and that is consistent quality and value. Fruit driven, spicy, and ready for anything.

Devil’s Lair Honeybomb Chardonnay

If you haven’t yet dipped your toe back into the Chardonnay pool, it is well past time. The great white grape is back, and this new release from Devil’s Lair may just convince you. Bright fruit, not over-oaked, not weighed down with malo, this lovely Chardonnay is your roast chicken’s best friend.

Coldstream Hills - The Hills Chardonnay

Coldstream Hills is as iconic as they come in the Yarra Valley. With a seemingly endless supply of high quality wine, they have managed to release something new. The Hills, as you may expect, comes from the sloping vineyards of the Yarra Valley. A piece of herb-crusted whiting and a simple salad will make a perfect match.

Big reds – for barbecues and beef

Penfolds Max’s The Promise Shiraz

Max Schubert is the creator of Grange. He is an icon in the Australian wine industry with no peer. His tradition of giving family and friends his favourite wines is honoured in this new release from Penfolds. Upholding the tradition of generosity and high-quality wine, The Promise is classic South Australian Shiraz showing dark fruit and deep spice.

Catena Zapata Alamos Malbec

Malbec is the hero grape of Argentina; robust, full-bodied and perfect for that most Argentinian of meals, steak. It offers generosity without a mouthful of tannin, and is the perfect way to drink outside of Australia without feeling too far away.

Pizarras de Otero Mencia

Mencia is a lovely grape, showing elements of both Pinot Noir and of Syrah: cool spice, red fruits, lovely acidity and perfume. These wines come from the north-west of Spain, close to the Atlantic, and have that cooler site flavour profile on full display.

Teusner the Independent

Kym Teusner is a Barossan wunderkind, making intense and robust wines of incredible quality and value for money. The Independent is no exception and follows in the proud tradition of richly spiced and fruit-forward Barossa Shiraz.

O’Leary Walker Cabernet Malbec

Given the Argentinean ‘ownership’ of Malbec, we sometimes forget that it hails from Bordeaux, hence this Cabernet Sauvignon and Malbec blend from O’Leary Walker. Malbec adds a lifted, almost blueberry element to these wines yet doesn’t detract from the heart of rich Cabernet fruit expression. Drink on days when it’s below 30 degrees, and pair it with a simple barbecue or a lavish roast leg of lamb.

 2015 was a stunning year of delicious releases, with resurgent trends and something for every palate. And if history has taught us anything, it’s that each new year brings something a little more exciting than its predecessor. Bring on 2016.