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Monthly Archives: January 2012

Nice one, ‘Selector’

Bleasdale in the Summer edition of ‘Selector’ which I happened to come across at work…

 
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Posted by on January 12, 2012 in Distraction

 

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Sommeliers and Beer

Sometime ago, my wife’s family and I went for dinner at Pilu at Freshwater, in Sydney. It was generally enjoyable, and the restaurant is widely recognised as having Australia’s best wine list, a fair statement when you peruse said impressive wine list (pdf).

But the beer list is ordinary, and almost insulting next to the wine list. Pilu aren’t making any claims about their beer list, it should be said, but the dismissive treatment of ales is indicative of a wider trend among (some) restaurants and sommeliers for whom there is a divide between beer and wine (or assumptions about their demographic).

I rather take the line of thought that suggests that both wine and beer are so diverse; with depth of style, flavour, and pairing; and ability of their brewers and purveyors, that being dismissive of one field or the other is erroneous and naive.

As such, it was refreshing to see an article titled Beer Me, Sommelier over at Slate, the conclusion of which is as follows:

Like great wine, great beer deserves well-trained people who can build a strong collection of barrels and bottles, and know how pair them well. Many restaurants and bars have a long way to go, but the example of people like Engert and Daniels points the way to an auspicious future. A well-chosen and expertly-paired beer can be a revelation, so it’s time for more establishments to get their people in the revealing business.

I concur.

 
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Posted by on January 7, 2012 in Distraction

 

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Fox Creek ‘Vixen’ NV Sparkling Cabernet Sauvignon / Shiraz / Cabernet Franc

It’s good to be back in the saddle. The holiday period was anything but; interstate travels, writing the new Heartbreak Club album in Melbourne, assignments, yadda yadda yadda. Have had many new and interesting drinks, though none have been sparkling reds (!)

Fox Creek Vixen Sparkling Red

Winery: Fox Creek

Region: McLaren Vale

Vintage: NV

Alcohol: 14%

Review

So, unlike the Padthaway Estate Eliza which I bought concurrent to this, the packaging of Vixen was a big turn off. However it had far more in common with the Eliza than the label suggested:

The wine looks identical the Eliza.

The wine smells identical to Eliza.

The wine tastes identical to Eliza, but with more Mr Sheen.

It really felt like they splashed whatever leftover shit was around into a barrel and added bubbles. If it weren’t for the price tag, it’d belong with many of the Cheap Tuesday cohorts. How this got an 89 for Saint Halliday is beyond me.

Alas, a same old story that’s getting tiresome; 2/5.

Fox Creek | Bought at Vintage Cellars Mosman for about $25

Pairing

South Park – You’re Getting Old

[IMDB | Wikipedia | South Park Studios]

From Wikipedia:

“You’re Getting Old” is the seventh episode and mid-season finale of the fifteenth season of the American animated television series South Park, and the 216th episode of the series overall. It first aired on Comedy Central in the United States on June 8, 2011. In the episode, Stan, after celebrating his tenth birthday, begins to develop a profound sense of cynicism, and his inability to see anything positive in the world around him alienates him from his friends.

The episode was written by series co-creator Trey Parker and is rated TV-MA L in the United States. It was seen by some critics as a metaphor for the frustration experienced by creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone stemming from the show’s continued production, and an unofficial series finale. However, Parker and Stone denied being unhappy with the show and stated that they still enjoy producing episodes.

This episode was frequently mistaken as a swan song for South Park, and indeed, the cynicism Stan Marsh was afflicted with in this episode was similar to the (brief) feelings of cynicism I had while reviewing this wine.

On it’s own merits, the episode manages to be tasteless, satirical and somewhat poignant. And much, much better than Vixen.

Alternative

Not in the mood? Red Duck Limited Release Golden Dragon is worth checking out.

Red Duck are one of Australia’s smallest microbreweries, but some of they’re releases are deserving of much more notoriety and acclaim. Golden Dragon is well balanced and very tasty, and a very pleasant pick as I work my way through the extensive McCoppins Fitzroy beer range during my month-long stay in Melbourne.

Image taken from Highly Hopped review

Red Duck | RateBeer

 
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Posted by on January 5, 2012 in Review

 

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