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Winestate Magazine December 2020

Launched in 1978, Winestate is one of the world’s longest running wine magazines, featuring over 140 pages on all things vinous from around the globe. Winestate tastes and rates over 10,000 wines a year, making Winestate the leading authority on Australian and New Zealand wines.

Winestate Magazine
$8.38(Incl. tax)
$58.71(Incl. tax)
7 Issues

in this issue

3 min

SOMETHING HAS BEEN HAPPENING OVER THE PAST FEW ISSUES, indeed over the next one, and back over the past few years. Wine Judges have been selecting more mid-weight wines than the blockbusters of the past. The number of so called alternative varietals has increased exponentially over the past few years, maybe not in volume, but certainly in the number of labels out there. Organic and biodynamic wines are growing rapidly as sustainability and environment are the new buzzwords and in some groups unless you support these you are considered a bad person. We support the trend with Australasia’s biggest blind judging of Organic & Biodynamic wines each year in Winestate, but don’t judge others who choose not to do so, or are in micro-climates where the procedure is too difficult…

23 min

A DIFFERENT TAKE ON GIN TAYLOR and Smith's Dry Gin, made in a tiny distillery in suburban Hobart, was named the winner of 2020’s Best Small Batch Spirit Award at the Tasting Australia Spirit Awards. The Taylor & Smith Dry Gin ($85) also won gold in the London Dry Gin category, and the Taylor & Smith Gin ($85) won bronze in the Best Contemporary Spirit section. Taylor & Smith’s Dry Gin is billed as "a beautifully aromatic gin with a unique character and an array of striking botanicals and other ingredients, including abalone shell, paired with a quintessentially Tasmanian ingredient: the needles of the native Huon Pine tree". “We love experimenting,” says Natalie Smith, one half of team Taylor & Smith. “Huon Pine always makes me think of being in the Tasmanian landscape,…

5 min
european report

AS parts of Europe looked, from an October perspective, as though they are were heading towards a second Covid-19 wave, and a winter of partial, and possibly even national, lockdown, a saving grace, of sorts, for the wine industry is that harvest is all but over, and vines are heading into their dormant phase. At top line level, European Union (EU) figures suggest that things might have been even worse. Data for the EU-27 nations from Eurostat (the statistical office of the EU) show that by August total retail trade, including the category ‘food, drinks, tobacco’ had recovered relative to their February levels. Textiles, clothing and footwear, and fuel consumption are categories still only at 90-95% of February levels. Nonetheless it has been, and remains, a rocky ride for agriculture, including wine,…

5 min
wine tutor

BROWN Marmorated Stink Bug (BMSB) and the Glassy Winged Sharpshooter might not be names familiar with wine lovers, but they could stop you enjoying your favourite drops in the future. The fight to keep Australian and New Zealand vineyards safe from international pests and diseases has never been harder, possibly since Phylloxera terrorised the vinous world in the late 19th century. Biosecurity is an item on every annual report and SWOT analysis. “It’s a booming business, unfortunately,” comments Wine Australia’s Program Manager Craig Elliott and whilst 2020 has seen a lull in the fight against these invaders the threat level is still high. In fact, the New Zealand Winegrowers have published a Most Unwanted flyer listing the top 10 pest and diseases to stop at the borders. BMSB is at the top…

5 min
wine travel

HOME to Hollywood and home-grown movie stars, smart restaurants and luxury rentals, Byron Bay is also the Wellness Capital of Australia. But there's more to the NSW tourism mecca for keen beer and spirits fans and those yearning for some of the best seaside bars in the country. In fact, you could spend a week visiting local breweries and distilleries on a DIY basis or with leading tour companies to sample top class craft beers and artisanal spirits. Located on the 39-hectare Brook Farm, Cape Byron Distillery was once a rundown dairy farm. Pam and Martin Brook took over the property in 1988 and planted 35,000 subtropical trees. Today's lush rainforest is a haven for wildlife and birds and produces most of the botanicals used to make the distillery's signature Brookie's…

5 min
a not-so-secret recipe

AT no time has success ever been so evident as when Leconfield Coonawarra scooped the pool in Winestate Magazine’s recent Annual Limestone Coast tasting. An eminent Winestate judging panel saw Leconfield Coonawarra leading the pack with exciting wines including the 5 star 2019 Leconfield Coonawarra Reserve Shiraz - equal top in category - eligible for Wine of the Year and the sensual new 4.5 star Syn Sparkling Rosé, also eligible for the Wine of the Year. All-in-all an amazing seven Leconfield Coonawarra wines were deemed eligible for the up-coming Wine of the Year. Leconfield’s home is in Coonawarra. The vineyards are planted predominantly to cabernet sauvignon and with merlot, cabernet franc, shiraz, petit verdot, riesling and chardonnay; yielding multi-award winning sparkling, white, rosé and succulent reds. Leconfield Coonawarra was established in 1974…