Toppers Mountain Red Earth Child 2011
If we said ‘Inverell’ you might imagine Lochs and monsters and deep fried Mars bars. Scotland, however, is not particularly well known for it’s wine production, so it probably comes as no surprise to learn that there is an Inverell much closer to home. In Northern New South Wales to be exact, in a region known as the New England. (Could the UK references get any more confusing?) But, it’s wine production reputation is probably equally obscure.
Not many folk outside of New South Wales would be familiar with the New England wine region, but Topper’s Mountain near Inverell, run by the Kirkby family, are doing some very interesting things in this patch of high altitude (900 metres up!) country. And they’re rapidly getting a name for themselves as producers of exceptional quality alternative varietals.
This one, their flagship red known as ‘Red Earth Child’, on first appearance looks like a pile of discarded laundry. I mean really. Nebbiolo, Shiraz, Tempranillo and Tanat all in the same bottle? Are they even all actual grapes?!
But, just like those (rare) days when you throw on a whole bunch of different elements from your wardrobe and somehow get a complete and uber cool looking outfit, this wine manages to bring everything together in a sort of Gestalt perfection.
This is seriously delicious, in a light, bright and tannins-just-right kinda way. It’s a bit fruity, and a bit savoury, and a bit racy, all rolled into one. If you haven’t even heard of half these grape varieties, do not be put off. Seek it out and put it in your glass this autumn. This is an exceptional introduction to just what can be made from European alternative grapes in an Aussie cool climate setting. Especially when you do the (almost) unthinkable and bung ’em all together.
Sure, it might be a little more exxy than what you normally spend, but we’re not having deep fried Mars bars every night, right?
Posh-up the weekend nibbles by serving big, generous glass fulls of this with a platter of thinly sliced charcuterie.
Available from: www.Toppers.com.au