We’re staying in Australia for another week to explore a couple of great values in white wine. Australia has become the darling of the wine world thanks to its ability to produce crowd-pleasing wines, often with fun names. In whites, however, I find many of the big selling Chardonnays to be a shade too cute or nice — but I do like a lot of the whites from the other grape varieties. In preparing the ‘08 edition of my Annual Guide I came across two fantastic whites that have the right credentials for house wines — they’re lively, tasty and inexpensive.
Long Flat sounds like a driving trip anywhere in Ontario, but the name was originally a vineyard site and wine from the Tyrrells winery in Australia. A few year’s ago Tyrrells sold the name so Long Flat is now a brand. Brands often translate to dull, safe wines but not in this case. In Long Flat white you’ll find a combination of the zest of Sauvignon Blanc grapes, and the savoury flavours of Semillon. The first glass is about refreshment and after that the wine gets more flavourful and foodish. How perfect is that?
Lindemans have always produced very commercial wines — nice but boring. However, I’m detecting a change for the better. The Pinot Grigio below certainly has a nice personality, but it feels genuine. You cannot help but want to befriend it because it has a lovely hit of fun — simple wine that says “let’s relax,” “let’s party,” “let’s start feeling good.” Enjoy anytime — no need for food. Plus, it has a handy screw cap.
And in case you missed it, I have previously recommended Long Flat ’05 Cabernet Shiraz (LCBO NO.: 212373, Price: $9.95).
•Busy tonight? Take the subway to Museum and come to my Wine By Mood wine tasting at Hart House (U of T). Sample eight wines and take home a copy of my wine book, Billy’s Best Bottles. The event is from 8 p.m. to 10 p.m. It’s an incredible deal for only $40. Visit www.uofttix.ca/view.php?id=271for more information.
Billy Munnelly has been writing about wine for 25 years and is the author of Canada’s largest selling wine book, Billy’s Best Bottles. Sign up for his free monthly e-letter at www.billysbestbottles.com