Redgate matures with oak
Wine: Sauvignon blanc reserve
Reviewer: Mike Gadd, Wino’s
We're back. It’s been a great four weeks of rest and relaxation for the Wino’s crew.
We’ve been half way around the world and back. So with the promise of spring, it’s on with the whites.
Today is the turn of Redgate and their reserve, oakmatured, sauvignon blanc 2011.
Straight up I’m always a little wary of those descriptors on the front of a wine label.
I suppose the years of watching big national companies using the word reserve on wines sold at $10.99 to somehow imply quality when there is none, has tainted it all a bit.
Even oak-matured has copped a flogging at the hands of cheap wines that have been stacked with teabags of oak chips during winemaking.
But here we have it, reserve and oak-matured on the same label.
I do however like that local wineries are re-introducing the concept of complex semillon, sauvignon blancs and blends there of, which fell off the perch in this region during the 1990s when too much fruit was never enough.
Pioneers like Di Cullen loved this style of wine, and we had an awesome reputation for our complex semillons.
In spite of my misgivings on the label, Redgate have had a good crack at it here.
They haven’t killed the fruit with lashings of oak and there is still heaps of mulchy grass and tropical fruit you’d expect from a sauvignon, but there is also a splash of vanilla bean and wet wood.
The oak treatment has filled out the wine’s body in the same way I always seem to develop a muffin top after the Christmas feasting week.
Not critical, but something to hang on to.
As well as the extra body, there a light funkiness to the palate, a creamy texture over the normally simple fruit, and a finish that’s soft and generous.
This is a wine that goes both ways. There’s enough fruit generosity to simply chill it and have a casual drink with friends or to pour a sip and contemplate the wine and life as the sun goes down.