Wine Talk

Snooth User: spikedc

Aussie Wine

Posted by spikedc, Feb 11, 2011.

Enjoyed a bottle of Penfolds Koonunga Hill Sventy Six Shiraz/Cab 2009 also Yalumba Scribbler Cab Sauv/Shiraz 2008 recently and i must say for the price they were extremely enjoyable.

The Koonunga, brilliantly dark colour,rich taste with slightly sweet spice.

The Scribbler, Loved it, smooth, rich, silky, peppery and chocolate.

My local retailer had a  St Hallet Gamekeepers Barossa Shiraz on special offer.

Any other Penfolds i should be looking at including whites..... Autumn Riesling and Thomas Hyland Chardonnay i can get locally at reasonable prices.

Open to other suggestions


Reply by dmcker, Feb 11, 2011.

Spike, I'm sure that Stephen Harvey will dash in, cape swirling, to deal with your questions soon. In the meantime you might go to the end of his thread on California Wine where I hijack the discussion to ask his opinion on a whole slew of wines currently in the marketplace from Oz....

Reply by dmcker, Feb 11, 2011.

Here's the link:

California Wine

Reply by GregT, Feb 12, 2011.

Forget the link.  It's the swirling cape that his admirers cherish!!

BTW Spike - the Hyland line is OK I suppose, but not necessarily inspiring.  They have several lines but the most solid IMO is a line called the "Bin Range" that can be very good. The bin 407 is Cab, the Bin 389 is a blend of Cab /Shiraz, the 138 is GMS and so on. Prices are all over on these tho.  And of course they make some of the iconic wines from Australia - the St. Henri and the Grange. The Grange became an icon and the St. Henri, just as ageable, became let's say a sub-icon, which means it's more affordable and certainly ageable. 

But we await Stephen!


Reply by spikedc, Feb 13, 2011.

Still waiting to feel the breeze from that cape.

Opened a bottle of Penfold's Rawsons Retreat Chardonnay 2008 last night with dinner, very crisp and refreshing on a dreary rainy night just the tonic !

Enjoying Penfold's so far.

Reply by spotty007, Feb 13, 2011.

May I ask, how much is that Riesling selling for ?

Reply by spikedc, Feb 13, 2011.

Anything between 6 - 8 GBP

Reply by Stephen Harvey, Feb 13, 2011.

Sorry for delay Spike, had some Internet connection issues at home the weekend [Mainly me having a couple of big nights and playing golf (poorly) on Sunday]

So the Cape cometh swirling!

I would concur with Greg, the Hyland range is generally OK and competent but not particularly inspiring and the bin range is generally very good.  I find that in general the Penfolds Chardonnay's are lacking in real depth and flavour other than their two top end ones Yattarna and Adelaide Hills Bin XX range but these are AUD90+

ST Hallets Gamekeeper is a good quaffing wine and if you get it for less than USD15 it is fun drink.

Penfolds will release their 08 Bin Range Reds here on March 1 and should be in US around March/April.  If you can get 06 still they are pretty good and the Kalimna Bin 28 is a good example of Aussie Shiraz.

As I have said before avoid the cheap 08 reds as most will be picked post the heatwave and will be stewed fruit in style [Yuk!]

The Bin 51 Rielsing is very good, 08,09,10 are excellent.

The Koonunga Hill 76 is a very good wine [don't confuse with the standard Koonunga Hill.  The winemaker is a good friend and he recommended this wine for my nieces wedding [and he was a guest!] He believes the fruit and attention this wine gets outweighs its retail price by a long way and I agree.

Scribbler is excellent and I think it has been discussed in an earlier thread.

Let me know your target price range and I will give you some more reco's or let me know what your local has - maybe a link to their site.


Reply by spikedc, Feb 14, 2011.

Hi Stephen,

Thanks for getting back.

My normal price range is anything between 5 - 20GBP beyond 20GBP for special occasions.

This is my local shop

Reply by Stephen Harvey, Feb 14, 2011.


Had a quick look - noticed no Penfolds on the site? anyway here is a quick reco of what I think would be good value.  I am always sceptical of wine sites vintage listing so I will put recommended vintages next to wine

Coriole Shiraz 04,06,08 - good value

Coriole Lloyd Reserve Shiraz 98,02,04,06,08[not released yet] excellent special occasion wine your GBP price certainly less than I pay in AUD converted and is one of y favourites.

Grant Burge Filsell Shiraz - 02,04,05,06,08 [Good value]

Majella Cabernet - 98,05,06,08 [Note no favours on price but about our equivalent, drinks OK young but does benefit from 5-10 in bottle, 98 was exceptional and drinking well]

Jim Barry Florita Riesling - 02,03,05,08,09,10 [Can be a polarising riesling, I like it but some of my riesling drinking mates do not share my enthusiasm]

Yalumba Barossa Shiraz/Viognier and Patchwork Shiraz - 04,06,08 [These are good quaffing cheapies and the SH/V goes well with Thai food]

Most of the sub GBP10 stuff is fairly average but lot of value in the GBP 10-20

I am a big fan of the Yalumba Octavius and JB Armagh at top end but I would recommend you try and get a tasting of them before you buy given the price

Yalumba Octavius 96,98,02,04,06 [06 yet to be released I think.  I love this wine and at GBP48 is about 15-20% < then retail here.]

JB Armagh 96,98,99,02,04,05,06 [Very expensive and is a very big shiraz, GBP93 is about 30% < retail here. I love it but it does flirt with the overripe dark side]

Hope this helps


Reply by spikedc, Feb 14, 2011.
Edited Feb 14, 2011

Thanks Stephen,

Informative and helpful as usual.

As for Penfolds i tend to buy where ever i see some, going to try and find some Kalimna Bin 28 and Bin 51 Riesling. Also like the look of the Coriole Shiraz and the Grant Burge.

Reply by Stephen Harvey, Feb 14, 2011.


Keep an eye out for the 08 Kalimna over next month or so would be interested in your impression

I would also be interested if you can find any

  • Jacobs Creek St Hugo Coonawarra Cabernet Sauvignon - should be around your GBP20 hot spot.  The 98,02,04,05,06 are IMHO very good examples of mid priced Coonawarra Cabernet,
  • Bowen Estate Cab Sav, should be in the GBP15-20.  A favourite of mine 98,05,06,08
  • Wynns Coonwarra Cabernet Sauvignon [Black Label] GBP10-20, again good example - 98,99 [avoid 2000-2003] 04,05,06,08

Let me know your toughts

Reply by spikedc, Feb 18, 2011.

Just picked up a couple of bottles, Penfolds Bin 51 Riesling 08  (given as a gift) and the Kalimna Bin 28 2006 which i found for 13GBP.

The Reisling i will keep until the weather gets better for an evening outside, let you know what i think of the Bin 28 when i get round to drinking it.

Reply by Stephen Harvey, Feb 20, 2011.

Bin 28 Price right on the money.  2006 should be nice to drink now, although it does age well

Look forward to your thoughts

Reply by spikedc, Mar 16, 2011.


Opened the Kalimna the other night with some friends went down very well with everyone. Loved the dark almost Liquorice taste,quite peppery also. This along with the Scribbler are among my favourites so far, I will be buying more.

If i buy some more 2006 Kalimna i plan to keep some back to see how they taste in the future, any idea how long i should hold on before trying and would it be worth the wait.

By the way, whilst talking Penfold's i saw an article about Treasury Wine Estates withdrawing funding from the generic body due to economic downturn and concerns over Australia's new,regionally focused strategic direction (whatever that means),



Reply by Stephen Harvey, Mar 17, 2011.


Kalimna should give you another good 10 years, I had a 96 late last year and it was drinking very well, still had maybe 5+ years, so I would not hesitate to hide a couple of 06's for a 5+ years.


On the Treasury Wine Estates I will chase down the article, I am pretty sure I know what it refers to but I will check before commenting.

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