Thursday, December 11, 2008

Lindemans Cawara 2007

No, I have not suddenly been bereft of my senses. I am fully aware that Lindemans is a huge South East Australian operation that produces wine by the tanker load for the mass market. While their reserve wines are generally quite nice, their ordinary product borders dangerously near on plonk, and I am familiar with Evelyn Waugh's dictum that life is too short to drink plonk. In particular, their reds are at fault, the Cabernet having so much tannin that it is all but acidic, the Shiraz being far too unripe and fruity. The Cawara is a blend of these two grapes which cuts back on both the excessive tannins and the overly present fruit flavor. Still, as it comes out of the bottle, the latter element is still too assertive, the result being what the English call a plummy flavor--just somewhat too nice. But, and this is a big but, as I discovered once purely serendipetously, if you put the bottle in the refrigerator for a couple of hours before drinking, this undesirable quality is greatly reduced and what you're left with is a very pleasant and nicely balanced mix of berry tastes which lasts nicely on the tongue. And the price, at present on sale at $11.50 for the one-and-a-half liter bottle, is certainly right.

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