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A Quiet Stroll Through Samuel’s Garden

By Alex Russell, Instagram @ozwineguy on January 26, 2017 in Food

Photo: Alex Russell Instagram @ozwineguy

Photo: Alex Russell Instagram @ozwineguy

Yalumba is Australia’s oldest family-owned winery, dating back to 1849. If you’re in the Barossa, it’s worth a trip to Angaston to visit them.

Yalumba makes wine for pretty much everyone. There’s the usually-great-value-for-money ‘Y Series’ range, which includes a wide range of grapes. Most of them you’ll know, like Riesling, Sauv Blanc, Merlot, etc. But there are also a couple of interesting drops such as the Tempranillo and the Vermentino (my personal favourite). Looking for a light-bodied, aromatic white for seafood? Try Vermentino.

There’s also a range around the $20 mark called Samuel’s Garden. The wines discussed below belong to this range, plus there’s also a couple of gorgeous whites from the Eden Valley – a Viognier (Yalumba’s pet white grape) and a Roussanne (gorgeous textural food wine) – and a couple of reds including a GSM and another Shiraz.

Beyond this, there are some pretty special wines indeed coming out of Yalumba. I’ll discuss these another day, but suffice it to say that it is these top-shelf drops that have made Yalumba famous. If you ever get the chance, grab yourself a bottle of the FDR1A Cab Shiraz (about $45) – a personal favourite.

Old Bush Vine Grenache
A lot of people know very little about Grenache, and to be fair, those who have tried it probably still know very little about it. It’s a red grape that can be made into a number of different styles including some that almost include a touch of ‘bubble gum’ to them, designed to be drunk now, and others that are dry, structured monsters destined for decades in the cellar. This one is kind of in between. It’s certainly not sweet, but it drinks well now – a lighter style, savoury, and a great wine to get into over summer.

The Scribbler Cabernet Shiraz
One of Yalumba’s top shelf drops is ‘The Signature’ Cabernet Shiraz – a wine that I absolutely adore. Each vintage is dedicated to someone special at Yalumba, and that person’s signature appears on the back. ‘The Scribbler’ is the baby brother of ‘The Signature’. It’ll drink well now, but a few months in the cellar won’t hurt. It’s a great wine for when you want to drink Shiraz, but your partner/friend/guest wants to drink Cabernet. It’s pretty good value, too.

Patchwork Shiraz

This wine is a steal. If you like your big Barossa shirazes, but you’re on a budget, look no further. It boasts that typical deep inky colour, loads of darker plummy notes and fruit on the nose, and a palate that goes on and on, much like my articles.

These wines will generally set you back about $20-25, but I’ve seen some on special for around $17-18 recently. I opened all of these with a few friends recently. There was no firm winner. Each wine had about the same number of people saying it was their favourite, and no wine was disliked by anyone. They are truly good value wines. As a side note, this is a great way to taste wine – side-by-side, so you can really compare and contrast the different drops. Try it!

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