Wine of the Week – Madden’s Rise Blanc de Blanc 2011 ( Sparkling Chardonnay)

Having sold out of the 2010 blanc de blanc  last October, it was with much anticipation that I tasted the 2011 vintage.

Madden’s Rise is on one of the best vineyard sites on the Yarra Valley floor. Located in Coldstream, on the famous  south side of the Maroondah Highway.

Quietly producing premium grapes that are snapped up by some of the big producers in the valley, they also make a small amount of their own characterful wines, mainly sold at their very cool cellar door.

A visit to the rustic and friendly cellar door is a must for those who like to discover the hidden gems of the Yarra Valley.

Madden’s Rise 2011 Blanc de Blanc.  Sparkling Chardonnay.

While not being considered a favourable vintage for red wine in the Yarra Valley, due the cold and wet ripening conditions, it was a classic vintage for sparkling wine. A silver lining to the grumpy red wine cloud.

This wonderfully expressive bottle of bubbles was matured on yeast lees for an incredible 7 years. This extended time on  lees is similar to what many of the major French Champagne houses implement for their most expensive ‘Presige Cuvee’ wines – often selling for between $250 and $500 per bottle

This extended time on the lees give a complex aroma of freshly baked sourdough bread, with yeasty notes hinting at cheese, and even a background hint of Vegemite – due to the complex   aromas of extended yeast lees contact.

The palate is quite fine, almost delicate, reflective of the cool vintage.

Although the colour has more golden hues that are evident in more commercially produced bubbles, the palate is delicate, clean and fresh.

In a traditional flute – the bead is fine and delicate. The taste is still fresh and vibrant, reminiscent of fresh, crunchy, Granny Smith apples. This crispiness is due to the wine not being put through malolactic fermentation. A great call by the winemaking team and owners to help the wine age slowly and gracefully. It is very expensive to cellar wines  before release, so to have a sparkling wine just released after 7 years on yeast lees is a rare gift.

I am pleased to report that it was delicious with the prawns you can see on the platter in the photo.

Official Score – Bloody Yummy.

Recommended Retail Price – cellar door / online –  $45

Posted in Updates

Ten X Tractor – Sold out of Pinot Noir

Breaking News – Ten Minutes by Tractor, Main Ridge Mornington Peninsula, are not able to show their distinctive and delicious range of Pinot Noirs at their cellar door – as they have sold out.
This is due in no small part to the devastating fire that destroyed the restaurant and cellar door on the 25th February 2018. The temporary cellar door is located at Petite Tracteur, Main Ridge. Happily the 2018 vintage of the Ten X Tractor Pinot, as well as the Estate range, is not far away,and should be ready in late February 2019. The Single Vineyard range, as is the TXT tradition, are due for release on the Queen’s Birthday long weekend in June. No one from TXT knows when the new restaurant and cellar door will be opening. There should be an update on progress soon. Stay tuned.

Posted in Updates

The Magic of Veraison in the Yarra Valley – Saturday 19th Janurary

I took these photos just south of the Marroondah Highway, Madden’s Lane. This area of the Yarra Yalley is somewhat warmer than others, so veraison (ripening), often occurs a week or two before other sub-regions of the Valley. Warramunda Estate owner and winemaker Rob Magdziarz informed me that January had been quite warm, and other grape varieties, including Shiraz were starting to show sighs of veraison. Rob indicated that it was looking similar to 2016, where the ripening period was quite compressed.This can place more pressure on the wineries – if many of the grape varieties ripen in quicker succession than usual

Pinot Noir 19th January, 2019 
 Tokar Estate, Madden’s Lane, Coldstream, Yarra Valley.

There is a smaller bunch to the left that is not as exposed to as much morning sun as the bunch in the center of the shot – so it will still take a little  more time to start to ripen.
This bunch of Pinot Noir grapes looks full of promise. Disease free, and as happy as a young bunch of Pinot can be. Lovely.
Posted in Updates

Radio 3RRR Promotion

I am excited to let you know that from Monday, 21st of January,in  conjunction with Radio 3 RRR, we will be running a Perfect Day Tours sponsorship promotion.The promo will run until Sunday 10th of February.

I love listing to the outstanding programmes on Sundays, and I try to never miss ‘Eat It’ at 12.00pm.

Always great to hear Cam and Matt chatting about food.

For lovers of Food & Wine,’ Eat It’ offers great information on seasonal produce. (Thanks John at the market! So glad you are back.)  Recipe ideas, cooking techniques as well as insightful interviews with leading chefs are great listening.Wine and other exotic beverages are also covered extensively. What a treat to hear that hard working winemaker Duncan Buchanan delivering a blow by blow account of what’s happening in the vineyard and winery. He also gives insights into the vagaries of the season – that most important element that makes each vintage unique.

I am delighted to have a Perfect Day Tours sponsorship announcement on ‘Eat It’ on Sunday 3rd and 10th of February, as well as other times and shows spread throughout the weeks.

So here’s the deal.

For current subscribers only

10% off the cost of their tour.

10% off the wonderful wines from Warramunda Estate & Liv Zak Wines – as well as a meeting and tasting with the Robert, winemaker & owner. Family and friends welcome to attend this intimate cellar door experience. Coldstream Yarra Yalley.

10% off Seville Hills Wines – Superb Upper Yarra Valley wines this offer includes an special tasting with John, owner & winemaker. Family and friends welcome to attend, generous Italian hospitality and fabulous wines.A great option for lunch. Seville Upper Yarra Valley. OR

10% off wine at Yabby Lake Vineyards – Mornington Peninsula.

Subscriber’s friends & family will also enjoy a fabulous free tasting at either of the above wineries, as well as a generous and delicious shared platter lunch with a glass of wine for only $40!

There are a range of tour suggestions and options available on this website, so please let me know what you would like, and I will put together you Perfect Day.

Simply fill out the inquiry fields, and I will be in touch as soon as possible.

Once you are happy with your Itinerary, a $50 deposit will be required.

Please see the dates that have already been booked and are unavailable.

Saturday – 9th of February
Saturday – 16th of February
Wednesday – 20th February
Saturday – 23rd February

Saturday – 23rd March

Please read our Terms & Conditions.

Posted in Updates

Oakridge Vineyard Series Shiraz 2017 – Trophy Winner

Congratulations to Dave Bicknell and the winemaking team at Oakridge for winning the trophy for Best Shiraz at the Yarra Valley Wine Show 2018. The deserving wine was the Oakridge Vineyards Series Shiraz 2017, grown on the home block at good old 864 Maroondah Highway. This prestigious award follows David being awarded the Gourmet Traveller Winemaker of the Year in 2017.

It is always a great cellar door experience at Oakridge – and we are always pleased to take our customers there to enjoy the wonderful wines, with friendly and knowledgeable team members.

Posted in Updates