David Lowe is energetic, infectious, generous and not least of all, a bloody good wine maker. Vice President of the NSW Wine Association, Vice President of the Winemakers’ Federation of Australia and President of the Mudgee Wine Grape Growers Association, he’s nothing but encouraging to the wine community around him and enthusiastic for all things NSW. His vineyards in Mudgee are farmed organically or Biodynamically. His guiding principles are evident in the outcomes of his wines. Which brings us to these 2 releases. Both “new” to the stable of Lowe. One wine being akin to a virtuoso violinist given a chance to fiddle with a Stradivarius; the other being a physical interpretation of a philosophy.
Tinja Chardonnay Verdelho 2013
This wine is part of Lowe’s “No Added Preservatives” range that started in 2009 with the Tinja Merlot. (If you’re wondering where Tinja is derived, it’s the name of the 5th generation Lowe family property and winery, located on Tinja Lane). Lowe states that this wine can’t be called “Preservative Free” as the yeast used during winemaking contained some “bound,” (meaning Inactive) Sulphur Dioxide, aka SO2.
Soft gold in the glass. Nutty, white stonefruit and green pea. There’s some soft tropical notes reminiscent of pacific island grapefruit. Some zing and spritz on the initial front palate. Soft lemon, lime and some light floral characters. The Verdelho a slightly tart point of difference. Medium to high on the acid, the fruit flavours seem to stop short about 3/4’s of where you expect them to. Perfect on a sunny afternoon with lunch.The intention of making quality preservative free wine certainly must be applauded.
Mudgee Blue Shiraz Cabernet 2011
Lowe has encountered something of a homecoming with this vineyard; apparently this was the vineyard he first learned to prune quite a few moons ago. The vineyard on Craigmoor Road is one of Mudgee’s oldest and according to Lowe is “blue blood Mudgee terroir.” 80% Shiraz and 20% Cabernet, a less experienced winemaker might have been tempted to throw a fair bit of oak at thick skinned grapes like these but thankfully, David Lowe has handled the French oak treatment with a masterful touch.
Earthy with oodles of perfumed rich, deep red to blue fruits. Soft, gentle cedary oak spice and varietal fresh pencil from the Cabernet. Plush, long red to black plummy fruit. Hints of cassis and a touch of herb from the Cabernet. Great frame work of balanced tannins. Excellent ratio of meat and bones. There’s a smack of the “guts of mud” Mudgee red, but that’s a only a component of the character of this wine, there’s a fair bit of class as well. A bit like Hugh Jackman. A bloody good wine and exceptional value.