Stephanie Toole's "Cordon Cut" is undoubtedly one of Australia's greatest dessert wines. It is something quite magical. "Cordon Cut" refers to a unique and risky process which involves cutting the canes when the grapes are ripe, allowing the remaining fruit to concentrate and raisin naturally on the vine. The result from the 2006 harvest is again a lush, intense yet elegant mouthful of delicious fruit cocktail of mandarins, pears, lemons, stone fruit and honey. Hints of spice and flinty minerals add to its beauty.
Mount Horrocks Winery
Mount Horrocks Wines is operated by proprietor/winemaker Stephanie Toole, who restricts production to approximately 4,500 cases per year to achieve her aims of quality and single vineyard expression. Mount Horrocks Wines has vineyards at three sites totaling 10 hectares, in the Clare Valley.
Stephanie carefully crafts her wines, which she describes as "essentially hand made food wines with emphasis on structure as well as generous fruit flavors." All grapes are hand picked, and only the finest French oak is used for those wines spending time in barrel.
View all Mount Horrocks Wines
Known for its Rieslings, the wines of Clare Valley are distinctive. The Riesling here is dry, dry, dry. Delicate yet firm, these wines won't remind you of Germany or Alsace - they have a character all their own. The lime and mineral flavors, paired with zesty acidity, make the wine perfect for summer sipping or pairing with seafood.
Since this is still Australia, let's not leave out Shiraz... Clare Valley does produce red wines and they are well made and tasty. Despite the fairly warm temperatures, the acidity in Clare Valley red wines are typically higher than wines produced further south. Good structure is a key characteristic, making Clare Valley wines ideal for pairing with food.
Like the United States, which is about the same size, Australia's winemaking regions are huddled into one or two pockets of the country. The state of South Australia, which produces about 60% of the country's wine, also has the most wineries and sub-regions, including McLaren Vale, Clare Valley, Coonawarra and Barossa Valley. New South Wales is home to the Hunter Valley, while the smaller, southern state of
Victoria is best known for theYarra Valley. Head way west to the very large state of Western Australia and you'll find the tiny region of Margaret River at the southern tip.
Most wine ranges from 10-16% alcohol by volume. Some varietals tend to have higher (for example Zinfandel and Cabernet Sauvignon) or lower alcohol levels (Pinot Noir and many white varietals), but there is always some variation from producer to producer. Some wine falls outside of this range, for instance Port weighs in closer to 20%, while Muscat and Riesling are usually a bit below 10%.
Wine Style Guide
Light & Crisp
Light to medium bodied wines that are high in acid and light to medium fruit. Typically no oak.
Fruity & Smooth
Light to medium bodied wines with lots of juicy fruit, typically medium acid and medium oak.
Rich & Creamy
Full bodied wines that have typically undergone malo-lactic fermentation and/or spent time in oak.