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Madfish Cabernet/Shiraz 2001

Other Red Blends from Australia
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    Madfish

    Madfish

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    Madfish, Australia
    Image of winery
    The Madfish story begins in the far southern reaches of Western Australia where 9 miles from the quiet coastal town of Denmark is the picturesque Madfish Bay. According to local folklore, the bay’s tranquillity is broken when two tides meet resulting in schools of small fish going mad…. jumping and racing “flat out like a lizard drinking” to avoid being gobbled up by hungry, larger fish.

    The Madfish label, produced by Howard Park, offers pure, fresh and clean fruit driven wines that are often seen gracing the tables of cafés and at backyard barbeques from Broome to Rottnest Island on the coast of Western Australia. Its following is mirrored in Sydney and Melbourne where Madfish devotees are keen to share in a taste of the enviable lifestyle of the west coast.

    Howard Park first released the Madfish label in 1992 with the Madfish White, soon followed by the Madfish Red in 1993. Today they produce a number of styles, namely the much-lauded Madfish Chardonnay and Shiraz. These contemporary styles are made from cool climate fruit with an emphasis on enjoyment and drinkability.

    The traditional aboriginal water turtle design on the label is a symbol of perseverance and tolerance – no doubt characteristics displayed by the poor fish in Madfish Bay who are constantly under attack by their predators.

    Australia

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    A large, climatically diverse country producing just about every wine style imaginable, Australia is often misunderstood by consumers. It is not just a source of blockbuster Shiraz or inexpensive wine with cute critters on the label, though both can certainly be found here. It is impossible to make generalizations about a country this physically massive, but most regions are concentrated in the south of the country and experience either warm, dry weather, or more humid, tropical influence. Australia has for several decades been at the forefront of winemaking technology and has widely adopted the use of screwcaps, even for some premium and ultra-premium bottles.

    Shiraz is indeed Australia’s most celebrated and widely planted variety, typically producing bold, supple reds with sweet, jammy fruit and performing best in the Barossa and Hunter Valleys. Cabernet Sauvignon is often blended with Shiraz, and also shines on its own particularly in Coonawarra and Margaret River. Grenache and Mourvèdre (often locally referred to as Mataro) are also popular, both on their own and alongside Shiraz in Rhône blends. Chardonnay is common throughout the country and made in a wide range of styles. Sauvignon Blanc has recently surged in popularity to compete with New Zealand’s distinctive version, and Semillon is often utilized as its blending partner, or in the Hunter Valley, on its own to make complex, age-worthy whites. Riesling thrives in the cool-climate Clare and Eden Valleys. Sticky-sweet fortified wine Rutherglen Muscat is a beloved regional specialty of Victoria. Thanks to the country’s relatively agreeable climate throughout and the openness of its people, experimentation is common and ongoing and there is a vast array of intriguing varieties to be found.

    Other Red Blends

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    With hundreds of red grape varieties to choose from, winemakers have the freedom to create a virtually endless assortment of blended wines. In many European regions, strict laws are in place determining the set of varieties that may be used, but in the New World experimentation is permitted and encouraged. Blending can be utilized to create complex wines with many different layers of flavors and aromas, or to create more balanced wines. For example, a variety that is soft and full-bodied may be combined with one that is lighter with naturally high acidity. Sometimes small amounts of a particular variety are added to boost color or aromatics. Blending can take place before or after fermentation, with the latter, more popular option giving more control to the winemaker over the final qualities of the wine.

    EPCMBYCSZX_2001 Item# 62950