We've pleased a lot of customers with Nugan Estate over the years and we have some exciting new wines from this outstanding Australian winery. Each of these wines received 90 points from Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar(a very tough rater) and they represent fantastic values at $16.95/btl. Recently, Matthew Nugan paid us a visit here and we got to taste his new single vineyard "Personality Series" wines and we've put Tanzer's reviews by each wine. The personalities are as interesting as the wines and Matthew tells the story on how each wine was named.
2012 Drover's Hut Chardonnay: Stephen Tanzer "Ripe nectarine, melon and tangerine on the fragrant nose and in the mouth. In a lush, open-knit style, with a jolt of bracing acidity adding lift and focus. Picks up a stony, almost Chablis-like hint of minerality on the finish, which lingers with very good intensity and focus."
Why "Drover's Hut?": Back in the late 1800's, when men were men and sheep were scarce, the rugged outback of Australia was tamed by our drovers (cowboys). Because of the vastness of the landscape and the size of cattle stations, these men would be away from home for months at a time, taking shelter along the way in these rugged little wooden shacks with tin roofs and bare floors. Very few of these huts are left and we've been careful to take good care of the one on the edge of our Chardonnay vineyard, which sits on the banks of the Murrumbidgee River. We keep fishing tackle (and a pile of good booze) in it now, for our staff who want to fish from the river.
2012 Scruffy's Shiraz: Stephen Tanzer "Spicy blackcurrant and cherry aromas are complimented by Asian spices and floral oils. Lively and precise on the palate, offering gently sweet, incisive dark fruit flavors and a hint of spice cake. Finishes on a gentle tannic note, with very good clarity and an echo of candied flowers."
Why "Scruffy's Shiraz?": Scruffy is the nickname of our Shiraz vineyard manager Brett he's a mountain of a man (picture the Marlboro man on steroids) and always looks like he's been wrestling the local wildlife. Despite constantly looking untidy and in desperate need of a shave, he's a real charmer with the ladies. We excuse him for being so rough around the edges since he really knows what he's doing in our vineyards and because we get to tell silly stories about him at our local pub. On a side note, Scruffy is always ready in public moments with a "pre-emptive" comment. When at wine tastings or dinner parties, before Scruffy dives into the wine he created, he'll always apologize to everyone in the crowd on what he might say after the wine is opened.
2012 Stomper's Cabernet Sauvignon: Stephen Tanzer "Tight, sharply focused nose displays scents of blackberry, cassis, graphite and mint, lifted by a lavender topnote. Dense, yet lively on the palate, offering intense dark fruit flavors that become sweeter with air. Supple tannins frame the incisive finish, which lingers with very good fruit-driven intensity."
Why "Stomper's Cabernet Sauvignon?": My mom Michelle, is the matriarch of the family wine business and is a pretty tough customer (she was named Australia's business woman of the year in 2004). That being said, one of her favorite winery workers is a vineyard manager named Stomper and my mother has never given him a harsh word (I wish I could say that myself). Stomper has seemingly found a way to sidestep her wrath with his carefree attitude. We call him Stomper because the whole building shakes when he walks in, and he leaves mud everywhere because he's too lazy to wipe his feet. And he keeps doing it!