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Tastings panel

Published:  18 January, 2007

2002 Buckingham Estate Cabernet-Shiraz, Barossa

8.99, Morrisons

This big burly Australian Cab/Shiraz blend is saved by a healthy whack of pure fruit acidity which adds up to a very balanced wine. Black cherry dominates an earthy and spicy nose, and then damson makes an appearance on the palate, providing a balanced level of acidity. The right amount of dryness makes this the perfect partner for

a bloody steak. A fair price, too. SP

2004 Grant Burge Barossa Vines

6.99; supplier: Hatch Mansfield

This Shiraz Viognier is akin to inhaling an oak barrel. Deep, intense dark blackberries, cherries and pepper. With 100 per cent Barossa-grown fruit, this 14.4%abv wine punches its weight. CD

2005 Willunga 100 Grenache

7.99, Liberty Wines

Rich, deep, dark berry fruit on the nose, plus dark chocolate. The taste is lighter than expected, with strawberry notes. It's well balanced with soft tannins, but none of the dominant pepper notes you often find with Grenache. Overall, not the blockbuster I was expecting, especially considering the 14.5% alcohol. Instead, a refreshing, subtly fruit-driven wine. Recommended. CD

Trapiche Sauvignon Blanc 2005

5.99, Thresher (3.99 on three for two)

This Argentinian Sauvignon Blanc has an attractive nose with piercing aromas of passionfruit, blackcurrant leaves and lime. Unfortunately, the fruit does not follow on the palate, which is rather disappointing. However, for 5.99, it has good varietal character and the alcohol, at 13%abv, is well balanced. It would be the perfect wine for quaffing al fresco with friends on a summer's day. RG