Joelle Thomson

Author, journalist, writer

Category: Top drops under $20 (page 2 of 4)

Top drop over $20… wine from a war zone

Wine from a war zone… tasting at Regional Wines & Spirits

5 September 2017

A fascinating wine from Lebanon – 2011 Hochar Pere et Fils

4 stars

Tastes like a cross between Nebbiolo and Chateauneuf du Pape, to me; high acid, firm tannins, red fruit, juicy long finish… succulent, bone dry, complex. This six year old wine has a complex range of flavours spanning red fruit (classic juicy flavours of a Chateauneuf du Pape), spice (cloves, cardamon) and black fruit (Cabernet Sauvignon). It has a medium body and high but balanced acidity adds freshness and length. Intriguing wine.

It’s a blend of Cinsault,Carignan, Cabernet Sauvignon and Grenache.

Top drop under $20… Cabernet from Chile

2015 Chingol Adventurous Bird Cabernet Sauvignon 12.5% ABV $11.99   3.5 stars

Fresh, smooth, spicy and soft, this Chilean Cabernet Sauvignon was made from grapes grown in the Valle Central and it’s a great little intro’ to what red wine is all about, thanks to its medium body and firm but balanced moderate tannins. These provide structure and a little interesting rigidity to the wine’s texture, without being overly challenging. Its black fruit aromas and spice clearly put Cabernet Sauvignon’s personality forward and it has a medium finish. Good value for money. Screwcap closure – great.


Top drop under $20… Chilean Chardonnay

2016 Chingol Adventurous Bird Chardonnay 12.5% ABV $11.99

3 stars

Chile is home to a diverse range of climates, such as the Valle Central, whers this Chardonnay was grown. It’s a wine that’s all about modern packaging and refreshing, ripe fruit flavours which err more towards the tropical fruit spectrum such as pineapple and notes of mango as well as grapefruit adding a zesty balance and a crispness with moderate acidity providing a lingering finish.

Good quality and outstanding value for money. Great to see the screw cap closure, which provides a high level of consistency to the wine’s freshness.



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