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~ Six of our Best Weekend Bargains ~
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Weekend Barossa Shiraz Bargain
Sensational $105 a Case

The Real Deal Well Priced

Crayford Barossa Valley Shiraz 2015
It seems my Friday special was lost amongst the holiday activities so it continues for the weekend. It is likely the best weekend special we have ever done. Always grab cheap, authentic Barossa Shiraz when it is offered as under $10 as it is rare. This Crayford was not made from a cheap parcel of Shiraz. It was made by Benjamin Parker from grapes we purchase and has gone through all the rigorous checks that all his wines must pass. See it for what it is-a sensational Barossa Valley Shiraz bargain. Please note, be reasonable about your purchase quantity as Nicole and Claire will knock back large orders.

Rich and Full Flavoured

Crayford Barossa Valley Shiraz 2015

The winemaker Benjamin Parker has done a brilliant job with this Barossa Shiraz. That we can drink such riches for such a modest sum shows how blessed we are as wine consumers.

For good reason Barossa Shiraz is the most important wine made in Australia. Shiraz of course thrives in the Australian climate and is associated globally with the country.

Historically the first regions cultivated were in the warm climates though it was not till the 1950s that the real significance of warm climate Shiraz began to be recognised.

As vintage passed to vintage it was in turn apparent that regions like the Clare Valley, Barossa Valley and McLaren Vale were blessed with some extra climatic influence which lifted the resulting wines above the pack.

As the decades role on it will be much more than Penfolds Grange that shines in the Worlds market place. Back home today however you can drink this remarkable Shiraz at a most agreeable price.

logo The price is $8.75 per bottle or $105 a case

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Reading the wine form guide is harder these days for customers as the game has changed and many races are running

I imagine a dedicated punter will never give up looking at the form guide, calculating the odds, then laying imaginary bets on the winner and the place getters. And so it is that this old liquor retailer scans retailer's advertisements and catalogue, carefully examining what whites and reds are for sale while muttering to himself.

I have noted one thing over the last decade and that is that the game has changed. Reading the form guides are not as easy as the used to be. A perennial winner like Penfolds Koonunga Hill no longer has the same form and better value is to be found.

A customer asked this week to convince him that the Shearers special was worth it at $5 while mentioning that he was finding good things for $10 to $15. If you have the money its likely that spending more will bring a better result so what can you say?
A group like Glug, and there are others, no longer plays the old game as we do our own thing and sell directly on-line. This shifts how you value things and make comparisons.

I'm looking at the Dan Murphy Easter catalogue and tiny as we are do not see much to worry about. I could not have said that ten years ago. They have the Rawsons Retreat for $5.90 while early in the week had the Shearers Lament Bluey for $5; and I'll take the Shearers thank you.

If you look for value in the $10 to $15 range we have plenty and while its natural to be tempted by our far cheaper offers this weekend I recommend an each-way bet, so grab the Crayford Barossa Valley Shiraz for $8.75 as it's that good.

30 Day Pricing Guarantee:
After buying wine it is most annoying to find it cheaper shortly afterwards. Currently Ben and I find selling on-line most turbulent. To hold our ground I confess to moving prices around far more than usual. Please notify Nicole or Claire of any upsetting price moves and they will then issue a credit.

A note to Glug customers: The Glug site is now censored and the black bars cover prohibited words. The story which began on August 17th is now posted on Glug with more to follow (click on the top banner). Thank you.

Salem Valley
Sauvignon Blanc 2015

What can a grower do? Australian Sauvignon blanc has been drowned by the New Zealand flood which is now over five million cases per year. We did not ask but assumed that is why we were able to buy this wonderful wine at such a low price.

In any month we taste many samples though the number varies as it depends on whether we need more wines. Thus we were not actively looking for wine when a grower-maker urged us to try this wine. Sauvignon Blanc from the Adelaide Hills has won widespread acceptance while those from the adjoining Eden Valley are harder to sell.

A guiding principle of ours is to buy good wines when we find them; and this applies regardless of the origin and style. So this wine has too much flavour to be mistaken for the cool, crisp New Zealand or Adelaide Hills style. Instead it is what it is, an outstanding wine, being true to what the variety does in the Eden Valley.

I give it 10/10 on my value for money scale and we take delight in preserving the differences of the wine.

logo The price is $6.99 per bottle
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Auld and Burton
Shiraz Grenache 2012

Our Adelaidean project is now a reality and for these reds we use less favoured varieties such as the Italians, Grenache, Mataro and numerous other odds and sods to make an appealing field blend.

The twist to make this possible is that wines may be sourced from regions as far apart as the Clare Valley, Adelaide Plains, Adelaide Hills, Eden Valley, Langhorne Creek, Currency Creek and even Kangaroo Island.

With less emphasis on the variety and the region and more on the taste and price, all manner of possibilities have emerged. Here is the third release from this interesting project.

In this case we have dipped into a large reserve purchased years ago of wines from 2012. There are only two varieties, though the final composition is from many regions.

logo The price is $6.99 per bottle
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The Diviner
South Australia
Shiraz Grenache Cabernet 2012

I often make the point that the expertise of a wine producing country or a large wine company should be judged not by the great wines but by how well they make cheaper wines.

At the micro level we take up this challenge with The Diviner.

Psychics try to divine the future but our use of the term 'Diviner' is more mundane and we use our twitching rod to seek out good parcels of wine.

The winemaker and I like wines with a lot of flavour and use blending to increase this feature.

Indeed this wine is over 80% Barossa. We purchased a lot of bulk wine from the 2012 vintage as we recognised its special features and while the rare and best have sold this Diviner shows the vintage and will make an exceptional house red for the few months we have it for sale.

The first Diviner was a Shiraz Cabernet 2008 of 128 cases while of this 2012 we made just 126 cases.

logo The price is $6.99 per bottle
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'West Winds'
McLaren Vale
Chardonnay 2014

These days the winemaker Benjamin Parker travels down to McLaren Vale once a week to visit wineries as we never stop hunting for bargains. All wineries have a barrel or a tank of something to sell and if we love the wine it then is all about the price.

Sometimes you agree sometimes not. About nine months ago we were able to buy an extensive mixed lot of Chardonnay and this Trennert is one of those. McLaren Vale like all our regions has many sub-regions but the prime reason for the flavours is the seaside location; so the cool of the ocean meets the heat of the inland.

Many agree that the Barossa Valley is lesser for Chardonnay as it lacks this cooling of the ocean. Thus you will find flavours which are riper than those of the Adelaide Hills but far cooler than those of the Barossa. This is a sensational all purpose white at a magical price.

logo The price is $5.99 per bottle
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Light and Finniss
Fleurieu Peninsula
South Australia
Rose 2015

This Light and Finniss explores the cooler spectrum of flavours being from vineyards well south of Adelaide in the ranges called the Fleurieu Peninsula. Looking back I think its fair to say that rose has been the 'next big thing' for many decades. Sales have recently increased so we are adding several to our list.

Really they are just white wines and in this case with some skin contact though you can alter the back palate and thus the finish of the wine playing with skin contact. And in any case they look good and at times perception is everything. I look back with fondness to Mateus and Kaiser Stuhl as they were shop favourites through the 1980s though a little heavy handed with the sweetness.

We prefer them drier with emphasis on defining a back palate expression though heaven forbid this is not a light red and must not be seen as such. This is a good wine and will find favour with the growing numbers adding this style to their drinking repertoire.

logo The price is $7.99 per bottle
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Colton & Hewett
McLaren Vale
Cabernet Sauvignon 2014

The provenance of the Colton and Hewett is good and this Cabernet from McLaren Vale will rate well in the list of great Glug bargains which now go back over 12 years.

There have been so many though I'm still excited by the Glug 'Our Little Devil' Currency Creek Petit Verdot 2005 which sold for $6.99 and assured me that if you build it, they will come. Please recall that the great premium wine regions to which McLaren Vale belongs turn out a range of quality each vintage.

Thus while this Cabernet has delicious flavours it is sold as a day to day red which will give enjoyment. McLaren Vale has a beach frontage and the cooling ocean plays nicely with the inland heat and this helps retain freshness which you need in Cabernet.

While we endeavour to 'preserve the difference' this wine is better with the adjustments and additions from the winemaker Parker. A good kitchen red for the next few years which hints at what it got close to becoming.

logo The price is $6.99 per bottle
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Big Red Mix No.12
from South Australia

To display some of our new wines the Big Red Mix rolls over to No 12. The highlights are many but the blockbuster Goat Square will thrill as will the Barbarossa. Yet the sleeper is the cleanskin McLaren Vale Cabernet which comes from a few cases left over after the labels ran out. If you purchased the 12 bottles as singles you will pay dollars more so it's a very good deal. Though as I said with the first, the joy is not the price or the saving but what is in each bottle.

Big Red Mix No. 12 from South Australia Mixed Dozen contains one bottle each of the following wines:
Dolan Sobels and Hope Pioneer Growers and Vignerons 'Squatters Three' Clare Valley Shiraz 2012
Cameron Country 'Red Post' Coonawarra Cabernet 2013
P. B. Burgoyne Adelaide hills Merlot Caberenet 2011
P. B. Burgoyne Wrattonbully Cabernet 2013
Princeland Watch Limestone Coast Cabernet 2013
Trennert 'West Winds' McLaren Vale Cabernet 2014
Albion Hills Langhorne Creek Cabernet 2013
Barbarossa 'The Valley' Blend Barossa Valley 2013
Goat Square Barossa Valley Shiraz 2015
Crayford Barossa Valley Grenache 2013
Langdorf Kaldukee Barossa Valley Grenache Mataro Shiraz 2012
Cleanskin Remainder McLaren Vale Cabernet 2014

logo The price is $89.88 per case

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A Box of Big Red Surprises

Trial Bins 510, 508, 5210, 5110 Adelaidean-South Australia Mixed Dozen
The story so far has taken us from experiments or trial bin reds in 2016 to the release of three wines: the Barbarossa from the Barossa Valley and two from the long arc of premium SA country we call the Adelaidean. These three wines sell for $8.99, $7.99 and $6.99. This makes the mixed case of experimental wines from 2016 very good buying at $64 so I again draw your attention to this value.

Trial Big Reds from the Adelaidean Project

Trial Bins 510, 508, 5210, 5110 Adelaidean-South Australia Mixed Dozen
This special contains three bottles from four early red trials:

Trial Bin 510 Adelaidean Range Cabernet Merlot 2013
Trial Bin Bin 508 South Australia Dry Red 2012
The South Australian Bin 5210 Dry Red Blend No.2 N.V.
Trial Bin 5110 Adelaidean Range-South Australia Big Dry Red 2013

These Red Trials are made from premium regions along the lengthy, rocky arc which joins the Clare Valley to Kangaroo Island and includes the Barossa-Eden Valleys, McLaren Vale and Langhorne Creek. This great sweep of vineyard country is as exciting as any large region on the Globe and may well be the best of them all. We refer to this wine country as the Mount-Lofty-Adelaidean range.

Great wines have been produced since the red wine trials of the 1950s by Max Schubert showed us the way. The object is to bring together wines of several varieties from many regions and produce a blend at a low price which we will call the Adelaidean. The first has gone to bottling. These wines are experiments we bottled in 2016. They are authentic, regional wines made by us and as a mixed pack offer outstanding value.

logo The price is $64 per case

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Go To Section: Australian Wine Industry
Censored by Wine Australia Part 3: Wine Australia Takes Away the Right of Free Speech Plus Threatens Jail
Saturday, 26th November, 2016 -  David Farmer
Wine Australia is threatening to have a South Australian winemaker/retailer sent to jail for two years if he continues to use words like these on his website:
'This Tasmanian sparkling wine represents far better value than most champagnes.'
The offending word is champagne even though it is not mentioned on the label. The wine bureaucrats argue that the very mention of the word on a website or in a printed description of a wine is illegal under legislation to ratify an agreement between Australia and the European Union. Read more..

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