Matthew Jukes 100 Best Australian Wines 2004

MATTHEW JUKES 100 BEST AUSTRALIAN WINES 2004

 

serious fizz

NV Brown Brothers Sparkling, King Valley, Vic £9.99

tight, lean and effervescent, Brown Bros fizz is a fabulously uplifting brew

NV Green Point by Chandon, Yarra Valley, Vic £9.99

focussed, elegant and long, Green Point’s new cuvée is finer than ever

1999 Jansz, Tasmania           £12.99

luxurious, mouth-filling and complex, Jansz offers stunning vintage wine at a cracking NV price

1999 Yarrabank, Yarra Valley, Vic £16.49

classy, restrained and eminently age-worthy, Yarrabank is a wonderfully controlled wine, balancing intensity and finesse

 

white

fresh & crisp

2002 Peter Lehmann Semillon, Barossa Valley, SA £5.99

a perennial over-achiever, PL’s Semillon is, despite its lowly price, every bit a legendary wine

2003 Tyrrells Old Winery Semillon, Hunter Valley, NSW £6.99

Bruce Tyrrell proves that Semillon does not have to be ten years old to be enthralling

2003 Stella Bella Semillon/Sauvignon Blanc, Margaret River, WA        £7.99

this Janice Mcdonald / Stuart Pym cocktail is terrific, zesty, racy and nerve-jangling

2003 Starvedog Lane No Oak Chardonnay, Adelaide Hills, SA £9.99

France watch out, ‘Starvers’ has cracked this heavenly style in its very first outing

2003 Keith Tulloch Semillon, Hunter Valley, NSW £12.50

a phenomenal wine, brimming with taut limejuice fruit and a never-ending finish

2002 Cullen Sauvignon Blanc /Semillon, Margaret River, WA £13.99

Vanya Cullen’s Sem / Sauv blend gains the highest ever expertwine.com score for this exciting style

1999 Tyrrells, Stevens Semillon, Hunter Valley, NSW £14.28

with five years under its belt, Stevens is already up to racing speed and this is now an extraordinarily elegant wine

2003 Mount Pleasant Lovedale Semillon, Hunter Valley, NSW £25.00

quite simply the most beautiful young Semillon we have ever tasted, and it is (already) absolutely ravishing

 

succulent & aromatic

2003 Leasingham Magnus Riesling, Clare Valley, SA £6.99

beautiful, exotic Riesling – the highest scoring ‘drinking’ wine at an extensive ‘03 Clare horizontal tasting – magical and awesome value, too

2003 Tim Adams Riesling, Clare Valley, SA £7.49

keen, leggy, lime juice fruit – drinking perfectly now, and it is going to evolve wonderfully 

2003 Heartland Viognier / Pinot Gris, Langhorne Creek, SA £7.95

an inspirational blend from the mercurial palate of young Mr. Glaetzer – breathtaking aroma and stunning texture

2003 Basilisk Marsanne / Viognier, McPherson, Goulburn Valley, Vic £7.99

this debut white blend is perfectly balanced, cleverly blended and incredibly yummy

2003 Chain of Ponds Purple Patch Riesling, Adelaide Hills, SA £7.99

intense, aromatic and robustly bodied, this is a rich, full Riesling, with bold flavour strokes and a grandstand finish

2003 Jacob’s Creek Reserve Riesling, Barossa Valley, SA £7.99

top class, serious quality fruit, the JC Reserve range is excellent value and this Riesling is the jewel in the crown

2003 Redbank Sunday Morning Pinot Gris, King Valley, Vic £7.99

year in year out we always fall for this cheeky, chirpy PG.  Accurately varietal, and bracingly dry, this is a food-matching banker 

2002 Mount Langi Ghiran Pinot Gris, Ararat, Vic £9.95

grown up and age-worthy, Langi’s PG is silky, honeyed and spicy, with pineapple and pear notes jousting with a lemon and lime finish

2003 Petaluma Riesling, Clare Valley, SA £9.99

serious, furrowed brow Riesling, with a long, fascinating life ahead of it. Having said that, you could always twist off now and revel in the hedonistic fruit

1999 Pewsey Vale The Contours Riesling, Eden Valley, SA £9.99

totally amazing layers of fruit, with intense lime and rhubarb flavours and the enviable advantage of several years under the bonnet

2003 Frankland Isolation Ridge Riesling, Frankland, WA £10.00

gripping Riesling, from the top WA producer of this variety, it is bursting with heavenly flavours and  boasts a minutes-long finish

2003 Knappstein Lenswood Gewurztraminer, Adelaide Hills, SA £11.19

our only Gewurz is a head-turner.  Clean, vibrant and aromatically precise, this is a refreshing, not oily, wine that excels with tricky dishes

2002 Mitchelton Airstrip Marsanne / Roussanne / Viognier, Goulburn Valley, Vic £11.99

epic alchemy from Don Lewis and Toby Barlow – this wine demonstrates just how crucial this blend is to Victoria’s vinous treasure chest

2003 Yering Station MVR, Yarra Valley, Vic £11.99

leaner and less exotic than the wine above, Yering’s MVR is a high tensile blend, with bracing acidity and a white-knuckle finish

2003 Craigow Riesling, Tasmania £12.78

Tassie’s top Riesling is highly tuned, fabulously chiselled and ever so refreshing.  Not for the cellar, for the fridge

2003 Mesh Riesling, Grosset/Hill-Smith, Eden Valley, SA £12.99

from two of the most quality obsessed men in Aus, this is, not surprisingly, a mesmerising study in Riesling’s finer nuances and its intricate layers of fruit – enchanting

2003 Grosset, Watervale Riesling, Clare, SA         £13.99

the more forward of Jeff Grosset’s two cuvées, Watervale is a joy in 2003, parading the full panoply of Clare’s Riesling nuances

 

rich & structured

2002 Swan Bay Chardonnay,           Geelong, Vic £7.99

in 2002, Scotchmans Hill’s second label came up trumps.  This is a scrumptious wine with breeding, elegance and balance

2002 Tim Adams Semillon, Clare Valley, SA £7.99

full-on, no holds barred, flamboyant golden nectar from Bonecrusher Adams’ rock solid stable.  Drink now or wait for a decade, this is a stunner

2003 Thomas Hyland Chardonnay Penfolds, South Australia £8.99

totally over-delivered and under-priced – Hyland is a lesson in fine, balanced, classy Aussie Chardonnay

2002 Brokenwood Forest Edge Chardonnay, Orange, NSW £12.95

ripe, rich, full and forward, this is a big, bold mouthful of mandarin, vanilla and honey – sexy

2002 Cape Mentelle Chardonnay, Margaret River, WA £13.50

class, restraint and brooding power, Mentelle is famous for its Cab, but for us, this is the hidden gem

2002 Coldstream Hills Reserve Chardonnay,  Yarra Valley, Vic £15.29

lush, juicy, ripe and glossy, Coldstream Reserve is always a winner, but in 2002 it is a triumph

2002 Shaw & Smith M3 Chardonnay, Adelaide Hills, SA £15.95

short note – the best wine Michael Hill-Smith & Martin Shaw have ever made

2001 Hardy’s Eileen Hardy Chardonnay, Australia £17.95

Hardy’s throw everything at this wine – the finest fruit money can buy and the smartest oak – you are left with an icon wine that is exceptional value for money

2001 Cullen Chardonnay, Margaret River, WA £21.49

fantastic intensity and awesome control in this heavenly wine.  Vanya’s entire portfolio is sensational, but this Chardonnay is a secret weapon

2000 Leeuwin Art Series Chardonnay, Margaret River, WA £35.00

the undisputed Chardonnay king, Leeuwin’s 2000 is jaw-droppingly brilliant and, internationally, it competes at the very highest level

 

rosé

2003 Chain of Ponds Novello Rosso,          Adelaide Hills, SA £5.99

a fresh, ripe, funky, modern glugger, made from Sangiovese and Grenache, this is a summer must

2003 Wirra Wirra Mrs Wigley Rosé, McLaren Vale, SA £7.99

awesome value and bursting with bitter cherry and raspberry fruit, this is our favourite Grenache rosé on the planet

 

red

pinot noir

2003 Swan Bay Pinot Noir, Geelong, Vic £7.99

we think this is the finest inexpensive Pinot in the world (and that’s twelve months of non-stop tasting)

2003 Scotchmans Hill Pinot Noir, Geelong, Vic £11.99

the big brother to the wine above, sealed with a screwcap and perfect in every way

2002 Tamar Ridge Pinot Noir, Tasmania £12.49

pure, succulent and luxurious, Tamar Ridge makes delicious, velvety-smooth Pinot

2002 Coldstream Hills Pinot Noir, Yarra Valley, Vic £13.29

dark cherry/berry and spice Pinot, with a lovely, smooth, long finish – avoid the Reserve, this is a more harmonious cuvée, and it’s much better value

2002 de Bortoli Pinot Noir, Yarra Valley, Vic £14.00

heavier and more intense than the rest of the field, this is a bitter chocolate and plum-scented beauty

2000 Knappstein Lenswood Pinot Noir, Adelaide Hills, SA £18.50

this is a wondrous creation – epic fruit, stunning density and tremendous length – it is also just about drinking

2001 Kooyong Havens Pinot Noir, Mornington Peninsula, Vic £21.95

Mornington has just delivered its much-anticipated Pinot promise in one bottle – this one.  Phenomenal

 

weird and wonderful

2003 Heartland Stickleback Red, Langhorne Creek, SA £5.95

this funky little Cabernet / Syrah / Sangiovese blend offers a very welcome change of tack to the usual formulaic entry level reds – brilliant

2002 Peter Lehmann Clancy’s, Barossa Valley, SA £6.99

’02 Clancy’s is an amazing wine that benefits from a cooler season and heightened aromatics.  In short, it is the best ever

2003 Rutherglen Durif, Rutherglen, Vic £6.99

a pumped up, juicy plum, blueberry and hoisin concoction that effortlessly combats Asian food and devours barbecue sauce

2001 Leasingham Magnus Shiraz / Cabernet Sauvignon, Clare Valley, SA £7.99

this and the ’02 that follows are two of the most impressive budget reds to emerge from Clare in years – delectable

2002 Nepenthe Zinfandel, Adelaide Hills, SA £15.00

zinful and unashamed in its broad brush strokes of glossy black fruit flavours – this is a dead impressive bottle of wine

2001 Penfolds Bin 389 Cabernet Sauvignon / Shiraz, South Australia £15.29

389 is back to ramming speed with the heroic 2001.  This should age and develop exponentially over the next two decades

 

cabernet & merlot

2003 McPherson Merlot, Murray Darling, Vic £5.99

the purity and focus of this inexpensive Merlot defies belief.  This is a mighty effort from McPherson and a wine that should unnerve the competition

2002 Normans Encounter Bay Merlot, Australia £5.99

with a year on the wine above, this cool, red berry-driven wine is already into its stride, making friends wherever it goes

2002 McWilliam’s Hanwood Cabernet Sauvignon, Australia £6.49

it is so difficult to get entry level Cab right, but Hanwood is a prodigious wine, that offers calm, multi-layered, accurate fruit

2001 Majella Cabernet Sauvignon, Coonawarra, SA  £13.99

with stunning oak and total control of the rich, classy  fruit, this wine gained a colossal score in our recent Coonawarra horizontal extravaganza

2002 Fox Gordon, King Louis Cabernet Sauvignon,        Barossa Valley, SA £18.99

Natasha Mooney’s deft touch and incredible talent are on display in this sensational UK debut Cab

2000 Dalwhinnie Cabernet Sauvignon, Moonambel, Vic £22.00

we, in the UK, are a few vintages behind the Aussies, hence we are able to relax into this stellar bottle, which is drinking beautifully now

1998 Domaine A Cabernet Sauvignon, Tasmania £23.50

Tassie’s premier estate yields one of the icon Cabernets in Australia – ’98 Domaine A is nothing short of a life-changing wine

2003 Mitolo Serpico Cabernet Sauvignon Amarone,  McLaren Vale, SA £24.95

Ben Glaetzer again at his most flamboyant and controversial.  This is a blockbuster, but one that shows total understanding of the style

2001 Cullen Diana Madeline Cabernet Sauvignon, Margaret River, WA £29.95

a fitting tribute to inspirational wine pioneer Di Cullen, this is her daughter, Vanya’s, finest work to date – spellbinding

2000 Parker Terra Rossa First Growth, Coonawarra, SA £29.95

the turbo-charged 2000 vintage gives Parker the perfect chance to flaunt its dense, brooding, velvety cassis fruit

2001 Moss Wood Cabernet Sauvignon, Margaret River, WA £30.00

this exceptionally classy 2001 is, in our opinion, a step up on Keith Mugford’s legendary trio of 1990, 1995 and 1999

2000 Balnaves Talley Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon,        Coonawarra, SA £47.95

no holds barred, Olympic Cabernet from Pete Bissell’s Midas touch.  Expensive? Yes, but it won’t take more than a quick sniff for you to see why

 

shiraz, grenache & mourvedre

2002 Heartland Shiraz, Limestone Coast, SA £7.99

every person that we have shown this wine to blind has gone into raptures.  Wirrega ’02 is a benchmark for all others to follow

2002 Wirra Wirra Grenache, McLaren Vale, SA £7.99

if only Australia would make more of this tremendous style of wine.  Herbal, sensuous, red berry and leather nuances

2003 Frankland Rocky Gully Shiraz,          Frankland, WA £8.00

bright as a button and bursting with peppery, blackberry fruit, this cracking wine is the perfect advert for juicy Frankland Shiraz

2002 Tim Adams Shiraz, Clare Valley, SA £8.99

dense, dark and exceptionally focussed, Tim’s ’02 vintage is his most impressive thus far

2001 Peter Lehmann The Futures Shiraz, Barossa Valley, SA £9.99

with smart oak and overqualified fruit, this is a very grown up wine at a sub-tenner price point.  The Future is already here

2002 Two Hands Angel’s Share Shiraz, McLaren Vale, SA £9.99

classically balanced Barossa Shiraz with a fair lick of black fruit sweetness, high-tone vanilla and rolling tobacco – wonderful

2001 Penfolds Bin 28 Kalimna Shiraz, South Australia £10.29

with awesome intensity, plum, blueberry, cedar and spice all effortlessly mingling on the palate, this is our favourite Bin 28 in years

2002 Torbreck Woodcutters Red, Barossa Valley, SA £11.00

it is amazing what young Shiraz vines can do – this is gob-smackingly serious wine

2000 Tintara Shiraz McLaren Vale, SA £11.45

classy, elegant and superbly balanced, this is a relaxed, harmonious Shiraz, with a lovely iodine tang and long savoury finish

2001 Mount Langi Ghiran Cliff Edge Shiraz, Ararat, Vic £11.99

lifted, scented, aromatic Shiraz, with a lovely cassis texture, and touch of tar and spice on the finish

2002 Fox Gordon Eight Uncles Shiraz, Barossa Valley, SA £12.49

the inaugural vintage of this wine in the UK, sees Eight (proud) Uncles parading this stunning offspring – pinpoint accurate Barossa Shiraz

2001 Picardy Shiraz, Pemberton, WA £13.83

Dan and Bill Pannell combine palates and experience to show the Northern Rhône how it’s done – pepper, pepper and more pepper

2000 St Hallett Old Block Shiraz, Barossa Valley, SA £14.99

the legendary Old Block continues to yield world class Shiraz.  This 2000 is nothing short of exceptional

2002 Wolf Blass Gold Label Shiraz / Viognier, Adelaide Hills, SA £14.99

young, stylish, spicy and very well balanced, this is a supreme effort and all the better for the screwcap

2002 Yalumba MGS, Barossa Valley, SA £14.99

black ink, cracked pepper and a fair whack of bonfire thrown in, all overlaying the deepest, darkest mass of intense blackberry fruit seen on the planet  – hurrah

2002 Henschke Johann’s Garden, Barossa Valley, SA £16.95

our highest rated wine at the ’03 Royal Adelaide Wine Show – Johann is a lucky bugger, as this GMS blend is near perfect

2002 Torbreck Struie Shiraz, Barossa Valley, SA £17.00

black olive, balsamic, pepper and blackcurrant – luxurious in texture and never-ending on the palate – this is yet another great Torbreck wine

2001 Craiglee Shiraz,            Sunbury, Vic £17.50

unique, memorable and ever so collectable, Pat Carmody’s wines are a lesson in restraint, passion and selfless devotion to this great grape

2000 Keith Tulloch Kester Shiraz, Hunter Valley, NSW £17.95

slick, multi-layered and beautifully dimensioned, Keith Tulloch has already mastered the ‘new’ Hunter Shiraz category

2000 Bests Bin ‘O’ Shiraz, Great Western, Vic £18.99

Viv Thomson’s iconic wines beg to be bought, tasted and treasured.  This is history in a glass, and mighty good it is, too

2000 The Lane Reunion Shiraz, Adelaide Hills, SA £19.99

brazen fruit, sporting a different nuance at every turn, this is elementally awesome wine with acres of charm and complexity

1998 Tahbilk Reserve Shiraz (1933 vines), Goulburn Valley, Vic £22.99

this is a real treat for Shiraz fiends – intensity, power and exceptional structure, all seamlessly knit together in the bottle and exploding out of the glass

2002 Frux Frugis Ulithorne Shiraz, McLaren Vale, SA £23.95

the inaugural ’01 was a landmark for McL Shiraz styles, but this 2002 is, dare we say it, even finer and more impressive – phenomenal work

2002 Yering Station Shiraz / Viognier Reserve, Yarra Valley, Vic £24.99

no shrinking violet, Yering’s top red is a frighteningly impactful blend, with a deafening aroma and shimmering palate

2002 Clonakilla Shiraz / Viognier, Canberra, NSW £26.99

the standard bearer for this exciting style of wine, the ’02 is back to the form of the heroic ’98

1998 Penfolds St Henri, South Australia £30.29

St Henri has, for years, flown under the radar.  This ’98 is a staggeringly accomplished wine and it must be the most underrated label in the Penfolds armoury

2001 Penfolds RWT, Barossa Valley, SA £40.29

extraordinarily impressive, brutally tannic, the liquorice, boot polish and leather notes counterpoint the exceptional core of black fruit

 

sweet

2003 Brown Bros Late Harvest Muscat, King Valley, Vic £5.99

one of the finest value sweet wines in the world.  Pure, liquid joy in a glass

2002 Bimbadgen Botrytised Semillon, Hunter Valley, NSW (half) £8.00

gorgeous, medium-weight tropical fruit, with a neat, cleansingly acidic finish

1998 Tim Adams Botrytised Semillon, Clare Valley, SA (half) £9.99

intense, golden and honeyed, this is a serious bottle of wine that would knock any ten pound Sauternes for six

2003 Mount Horrocks Cordon Cut Riesling, Clare Valley, SA (half) £12.49

Stephanie Toole’s heavenly Riesling is already firmly cemented in people’s minds as the leader in its field

2001 de Bortoli Noble One, Riverina, NSW (half) £15.99

another old favourite, Noble One (not surprisingly) sauntered into this line up, on account of its unbelievable class and breeding

 

fortified

2001 d’Arenberg Fortified Shiraz, McLaren Vale, SA £13.99

this is a wicked brew, with fiery, spicy, raisiny fruit and a long, mouth-filling finish

NV Heritage Tokay, Barossa Valley, SA £19.99

Steve Hoff’s deliciously naughty Tokay is the joker in his wonderful pack of Barossa wines – captivating