I do this blog for fun, the wines here are some of the very few I can be bothered to write up. The cream has risen.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Crabtree 2010s, well mostly

2010 Shiraz "Hilltops vineyard"
I wish they'd label this a bit clearer because of course it also says 'Watervale' on the label. Very nice wine from a great vintage showing regional Clare characters and skilled winemaking. Plenty of fruit oomph and will go 5+ years I reckon. ***** VFM and HRec+ ~$17

2010 Shiraz "Watervale"
This one does at least have a small red circle telling you it's hand picked that allows easy identification between the 2 Shirazii, then again the Hilltops is hand picked too! There is more structure to this wine and the fruit is darker in nature, designed to age a bit longer I'd guess and probably for 10 years or so. Right now the Hilltops drinks better but I can see a lot to come here. ***** VFM and HRec++ ~$20

2010 "Hilltops" Cabernet Sauvignon
First release! The Windmill 2010 is long gone, this is the new baby brother, and what a very interesting wine this is. I put it out blind to the gang last night and got back guesses of Cab Franc, Sangiovese, and even Shiraz plus descriptors of lychees and mulberry. It's a fairly muscular wine if not quite full bodied and quite slurpable. Not sure it's in for the long haul but I reckon I'll stick one away for 3-5 years. ***** VFM and Recommended ~$16

Crabtree 2011 Tempranillo - the full monty tasting

This wine intrigued me, not the least because it was 2011 and I was ready to write it off. This is pretty big for a Tempr, and big for a 2011 wine. Apparently it was harvested before the big wet. The nose is very powerful, and savoury. I've no doubt there is a fair wack of new oak in this but I don't find it sticking out in taste or bouquet, but the tannin is a different story, not unpleasant but does give you the feeling it needs to integrate over the next 2-3 years, then again I like oak. There's a little dried herb bitterness right at the end, but the pleasant kind and adds to the savoury character.

After 2 glasses I am convinced, this is a very good 2011 wine, and one of the better Temps I've had for a while (though I don't have many). Went perfectly with roast pork. I wouldn't buy a case but will pick up a few more if I see them again. Recommended+ and **** ~$17

The prices quoted were specials at Melbourne St Cellars who often do a buck or 2 off for the wines on tasting, and another buck per bottle in (mixed) dozens. 


  1. Had a bottle of the Hilltops Shiraz open for a couple of days, and gee it's so good. It has clearly benefitted from plenty of air, so if you're opening one int he short term give it a double decant and a few hours breathing if possible. Outstanding value this.

  2. Hey nice blog, love the alternate variety focus. Reading your thoughts on the Temp with interest - I'm yet to be convinced of Clare's ability to grow quality Temp. Tim Adams does it well but not seen many others.