The West

Wine talk from Margaret River (including the wine review)
Wine talk from Margaret River (including the wine review)

The Dame of Champagne

Bubbly aficionados can expect to learn more about their favourite beverage this week thanks to a visit from a champagne expert.

Kyla Kirkpatrick, more commonly known as the champagne dame, hosted a masterclass at Perth’s Must Wine Bar yesterday and says she will consider bringing her one-lady show to Margaret River in the near future.

Ms Kirkpatrick is a champagne expert who has lived in France, worked with some of the most prestigious producers of the bubbly beverage and taught the history and nuances of it for more than six years.

She said her seminar included an in-depth history of the creation of champagne.

“I don’t just go back to the times of Dom Perignon, I take people back nearly 90 million years to learn about the geology of the Champagne area as a region, which was an inland town in France,” she said.

“As the water subsided it left a chalk, or limestone foundation and this is what created the great growing of grapes in the region.”

She also spoke about the “godfather” of champagne, Dom Perignon, who she said mistakenly discovered the now revered alcoholic drink.

“Dom Perignon actually tried to get the bubbles out of champagne for a while, but when he couldn’t he accepted what he was working with and tried to perfect it,” Ms Kirkpatrick said.

“Thank God for that.”

The seminar will also include a tasting of five of the world’s most popular champagnes, an education of how it is made and the dos and don’ts of opening, pouring and matching champagne with food.

Admission to the seminar is $95 and five spots were still available for the Perth session.

For more information call 0403 149 809.

Wine review by Mike Gadd, Wino's Margaret River

Knotting Hill's 2011 Sauvignon Blank

Owning a place called Wino’s means I tend to get involved in lots of conversations about wine and more generally, drinking it.

The question eventually comes up, when is enough, enough?

We all know that binge drinking is not healthy in any way, shape or form. Good science also says that a glass of wine a day is good for your health and well-being.

So, where is the happy medium and how do we talk about it publicly? In an era of conservatism, it’s very hard to communicate this without seeming like either a wowser or promoting over indulgence.

So here I am reviewing the Knotting Hill Sauvignon Blanc 2011.

Did I sit down in a sterile lab with 30ml and dispassionately analyse every organoleptic detail? Or did I enjoy it as part of a wider experience that brought a few friends together with more than a few bottles?

Well to help you along, this is a lovely drop.

2011 was a warm year and I think a tough one to get whites in with moderate alcohols and some fresh flavours.

These guys seemed to have managed it quite well with a 12.5 per cent wine that, served chilled, is a cracking wine for a summer’s day.

It’s not full on and pungent like a Kiwi sauvy, but has heaps of green apple crunch with some fresh squeezed limes.

It has easy drinking, passion and kiwi fruit flavours and a face slapping crispness to finish.

I was really impressed with the quality here.

How much to have? Well my advice is as much as enhances your relationships, increases your sense of well-being, and lets you live a happy, healthy and fulfilled life.

To win a bottle of Knotting Hill send the name of the wine and your contact details, including your name and phone number to PO BOX 204, Busselton, WA 6280.

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