Sunday, January 25, 2009


So Australian wines have sort of fallen from grace with me these days, mainly because I personally have found a lot of them to be superripe, almost syrupy (thank you Mollydooker) and I tend to enjoy some acidity in my wines. Yet Dan Philips, the madman behind The Grateful Palate (an importer of Australian wines that have been Parker darlings for years), has continued to intrigue me with the mirth and mayhem he creates with his various wines.

For example, one of the most requested wines in our store is the Strong Arms Shiraz (currently 2007). This medium- to full-bodied red is very drinkable, supple yet showing some bright red berry and white pepper notes. It possesses blackberry, plum, violet and licorice aromas and flavors as well and finishes creamy smooth. Sourced from McLaren Vale, Riverland and Barossa, this inexpensive red is a treat. It is highly allocated – we only received 25 cases for probably the year so this is one you have to act fast on (our main guy Alfonse loves this stuff so it could already be gone).

Some of the other wines we are getting in are the new Green Lion Merlot 2006 and Red Lion Cabernet Sauvignon 2006 – 2 new California projects, plus Marquis Philips Baby Roogle Red 2007, Shiraz 2007 and Riesling 2008, and new R Winery (Dan’s collaboration with Aussie winemaker Chris Ringland) Southern Gothic wines – the Poor Thing Grenache and Southern Belle Shiraz. I will have my tasting notes on these extremely limited wines all week this week as I climb back in the saddle.

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