I was in the Adelaide Hills in 2013. This exact time last year, in fact. It was supposed to be in the middle of harvest, but it had been such a wonderfully warm vintage, that everything had come off the vines a week early. This meant I was able to try some tank samples of the whites, many of which had gone completely through fermentation by this point. I had been travelling with the gracious team of Jacob’s Creek (who are aligned with Orlando and Richmond Grove), and so much of the fruit I was trying was Riesling, but I did try a little Sauv in the Adelaide Hills, and it was superb. Both varietals possessed a delicate floral character, the kind of thing you only get on those perfect white years when warm days are followed by cool nights, and the rain barely comes at all. The character they always seek in Chablis, but seldom find. As soon as I nosed this Shaw and Smith Sauvignon, I was transported back there, to those green and gorgeous undulating hills, and the bountiful harvest I found within them in early Autumn.
Very pale. Sweeter fragrance than previous vintage. Lovely white florals, pineapple and lemongrass on the nose. Gorgeous palate weight. Slightly unctuous but still lean. Pear up front, followed by grapefruit and touches of sherbet and chalk. Very approachable. Finish is floral and lacking steeliness of some vintages, but this is a pleasant change.16/20 Drink Now 100AED Plus Tax (This one drunk at the Ivy, 175 aed for 7 wines [50ml~ish pours] and 7 cheeses on Wednesday nights)