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Weekend Specials

This Weekend

Best Three of the
Red Arrow Down Specials



For customers the buying of wine in Australia is more complicated than it was 15 years ago. Back then the best buys were well know brands as sold by our big chains. This is no longer the case and the best buys are now on-line and are not big brands.



Exciting New Release
Farmers and Growers 'Wheatsheaf' South Australia Dry Red N.V.

Region: Barossa Valley
The first Wheatsheaf was a Shiraz Cabernet 2008 and the brand comes and goes as we find suitable wine. If you still have past vintages you will be pleasantly surprised.

Currently the winemakers enjoy taking an old vintage and refreshing it with say a 2017. This makes the wine a non-vintage but brings together maturity and youth, ideal for a tasty budget red.

This is a complex blend as it contains wines from many regions, all in South Australia, with a slant towards Cabernet. As expressed younger vintages lift the fruit of older vintages in ways which benefit both. Good wine for general purpose drinking.

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Exceptional Quality
Ariadne Adelaide Hills Chardonnay 2018

Region:Adelaide Hills, SA

The region called the Adelaide Hills extends NE-SW for 70 kilometres, a very large region of which about 4000 hectares are vineyards.

It covers a patch of high ground, above 300 metres and up to 600 metres, lying to the east of Adelaide. Imagine a patch work quilt of vineyards rather than an extensive sheet of co-joined vineyards.

This means the region is a place of great diversity of styles though the average quality is high to very high. Vineyards face all directions with variable angles of slope and exposure. Being higher it is cooler so we like the whites while being cautious about the reds. Exceptional Chardonnays have been made for decades and are still improving in quality. We did not make this wine but purchased it from a maker we follow.

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Red Arrow Down Mix

Created for you, our Red Arrow Down bargains highlight the significant cost reductions, combined with boosted quality that the winemaking team have delivered over the last two years. The big drops come from the discovery parcels we find because we are buying better and the ability to bottle these small amounts in-house. The first three were offered nearly a month ago, and they have continued to flow out of our doors and straight into your homes.

I can confidently say that this new bundled offer, a combination of my favourites highlighted in past weeks, offers not only quality you can rely upon, but the bonus of big savings, with a little bit skimmed off the top of the total of our already reduced bottle prices. This is too good to miss.
Each mix contains one bottle of the following 12 wines:

Glug 'Wiley Peacock' Barossa Valley Shiraz 2017
Stratus Adelaide Hills Sauvignon Blanc 2017
Landaus Vintners 'Chapmans Crossing' South Australia Cabernet Sauvignon 2013 (3rd Bottling)
Crayford Barossa Valley Shiraz 2017
Trial Bin W157 Adelaidean-Mount Lofty Range Adelaide Hills Chardonnay 2016
Darby Lane Adelaide Hills Chardonnay 2016
Glug 'The Hipster' Barossa Valley Grenache 2017
Stonevale 'Red Barn' Bin 671 Winemakers Blend Barossa Valley 2016
Trial Bin 879 South Australia Dry Red Blend 2013
Trial Bin 667 Barossa Valley Red Blend 2016
Princeland Watch Limestone Coast Shiraz Cabernet Sauvignon 2015
Albion Hills Langhorne Creek Shiraz 2016

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Recommended Bargain from Adelaide Hills
Darby Lane Adelaide Hills Chardonnay 2016

Region: Adelaide Hills
Adelaide sprawls along a coastal plain with market gardens to the north while south are the coastal vineyard districts of Reynella-now housing - and McLaren Vale.

The eastern back drop to Adelaide is a rapidly rising fault scarp that lifts to 400 metres and further east peaks at 727 metres at Mount Lofty.

With some vineyards as high as 600 metres this provides a wonderful contrast in flavours to the vineyards of the warm coastal plain.

In general consumers favour whites from cooler regions which are crisper and lighter and retain natural acidity.

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Grenache Success from the Winemakers
Glug 'The Hipster' Barossa Valley Grenache 2017

Region:Barossa Valley, SA

A famous heritage variety at last gaining a following which allows further wine making attention so the wines get better again. Barossan first and Grenache second and all I can say is where have these Grenaches been all these decades. Well now they have arrived, and your drinking enjoyment will expand by including Barossa Grenache at the table.

They were occasionally made by larger companies but did not develop a following at the scale they sort. It seems specialist varieties need to be embraced and grow among a small school of enthusiasts who do the encouragement to other drinkers. We are believers at Glug and urge on those who are fascinated with this variety.

It is worth remembering that the very expensive French wines from Chateauneuf du Pape are made from Grenache and those we offer are far better value for money. Frankly they are better wines.

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Exciting New Release
Crayford Barossa Valley Shiraz 2017

Region: Barossa Valley
When I began selling wine in 1975 it was not easy to locate and thus stock a range of 100% Barossa Valley Shiraz. The Barossa was a centre for wine production for large companies, Seppelts, Penfolds, Hardys, Yalumba, Gramps -Orlando, Kaiser Stuhl and others a bit smaller like Saltrams, Tollana and later Peter Lehmann.

Mostly they concentrated on large volumes of regional blends and the idea of promoting a range of Barossa reds was yet to develop. Now you can purchase perhaps 50 to 100 different Shiraz individual bottlings from each vintage which is of course the future for this unique vineyard setting. Glug specialises in a range as that is what the Barossa does best.

The most popular for a number of years has been the Crayford and it good to have it back and under $10.

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Fabulous Barossa Field Blend
Light & Finniss Barossa Valley Classic Dry White 2018

Region: Barossa Valley, SA
The Barossa Valley makes the all time best Roses and has a long history of fabulous whites. For example, who will forget the wonderful Orlando Riesling 1953 and the subsequent John Vickery Barossa Rieslings. Many Trophies have been awarded to Semillons and other varieties.

Yet this is the time of cool climate whites and New Zealand and a pall has fallen across the Barossa. To this wine merchant this spells bargain time and that is what is offered with this Light and Finniss.

This is a Benjamin discovery and part of the stock purchased from a local winery. The blend is Chardonnay and Semillon and three other varieties plus we have added in Glug stocks to lift the palate and worth calling a field blend.

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Same Vineyards as Previous Vintages
Ariadne Adelaide Hills Sauvignon Blanc 2018

Region: Adelaide Hills, SA
Breathtaking, beautiful Sauvignon, balanced with no pointy edges, and while I have found no faults with the previous vintages the 2018 is a big notch up in quality. Why I am uncertain though the percentage of free-run juice is higher.

The grapes from this vineyard have never produced overtly green, herbal sauvignons and this vintage there are almost none of those characters which so readily identify the variety. Yet the wine has all the sappy, freshness you would want and more.

Whites from the Adelaide Hills are getting better and better and recently Halliday gave 98 points to the Penfolds Reserve A Chardonnay 2017, saying ‘chiselled like a marble Roman statue’. The same quality is popping up in other varieties and I give the Ariadne 2018 a much higher score than the 2017.

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Bold Shiraz the Gift of the Barossa
Glug 'Wiley Peacock' Barossa Valley Shiraz 2017

Region: Barossa Valley, SA

A deep crimson black, a colour I call cherry black after very ripe cherries, which finally reveals a very bright, purple crimson at the meniscus; the absolute essence of a well-made and youthful Barossa red.

To get this colour it must made in the traditional way in open fermenters which allows the fruit to round out from aeration. Originally they used fermenters made from giant slabs of slate but these are a devil to clean, though Henschke and Rockford still maintain them, at least for the prized reds. Cement took over and then stainless steel.

The maker of this whopper used stainless though the vat size is important and this batch was produced in small five tonne fermenters. Big companies fermenting thousands of tonnes do not have the time for this luxury and it shows in the wines.

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Red Arrow Special
Stratus Adelaide Hills Sauvignon Blanc 2017

Region: Adelaide Hills, SA

This Stratus is the third release from the same source in the Adelaide Hills, a high altitude vineyard above the town of Woodside. To bring out the best of Sauvignon Blanc you need a cool climate and to get this coolness in Australia requires elevation or a southern cool region like Tasmania.
Around 1978 New Zealand released the cool tasting Sauvignon Blanc which evolved from the low lying, river terraces of Marlborough, located at the northern end of the South Island. At this time little was grown in Australia but gradually the plantings expanded. The wines from low lying land, even when close to the cooling ocean are not as complex as those from the higher altitude vineyards.
At this stage some of the best come from the Adelaide Hills and in this large region I think the ‘best of the best’ come from the region near Woodside called the Basket Range.
Differences in climates and winemaking methods from each region means those from Adelaide Hills have similarities and differences to those from New Zealand. With the Stratus you will discover a steelier, tight complexity when compared for example to fruitier wines.

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World Class Barossa Grenache
Crayford Barossa Valley Grenache 2017

Region: Barossa Valley
As the Crayford amply demonstrates Barossa Grenache should now be a regular part of your drinking range as the current group of winemakers, including Benjamin, have now mastered this variety making them world class. The first Crayford was the Crayford Barossa Valley Shiraz Mataro 2007 and since then there have been several dozen wines.

Rich and fruity with spartan oak use is the Crayford style though they are aged in old oak puncheons. The Barossa Valley has a rich source of old vine Grenache and since consumers have been slow to understand the beauty of the variety there has been no need for new plantings.

In the late 1970s I imported several wonderful houses from Chateauneuf du Pape which are made with Grenache so for many decades I was puzzled why the variety was so hard to sell in Australia when made from local grapes. Fortunately this is changing though not quickly. This lovely wine will promote the trend.

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Magnificent Return
Albion Hills Langhorne Creek Shiraz 2016

Region: Langhorne Creek
The first Albion Hills was a 2011 Cabernet from Langhorne Creek, developed from a special wine parcel we purchased. We offer many wines from Langhorne Creek and Albion Hills range is our highest quality. As often expressed the special location of Langhorne Creek has not been appreciated until recently.

It can be seen as the eastern expression of McLaren Vale being on the sloping alluvial fans along the eastern side of the Mount Lofty Range while McLaren Vale is on the western and ocean side.

The temperature averages are very similar yet we find more mid palate sweetness in Langhorne Creek reds which is a taste we enjoy. The other attraction of course is that good quality reds are far cheaper than those of the Barossa Valley and McLaren Vale.

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Barossa Heritage Variety and Cabernet Sauvignon
Crayford Barossa Valley Cabernedro 2017

Region: Barossa Valley
Recall Benjamin discovered that the heritage variety, meaning it dates to the 19th Century, but unknown variety from Portugal, Bonvedro, blends beautifully with Barossa Valley Cabernet. He titles his blends of the two as Cabernedro and I find the results stunning.

We have now released many examples of various grades with this Crayford being the best grade. Bonvedro would have been planted with the other Portuguse Post varieties when the future was seen as fortified wines.

Possibly it was mis identified when first planted or the details were simply lost and the true identity has only been recognised recently from DNA testing. Glug is keen on these sorts of odd varieties as they are hard to sell and are offered into the market place where we shop at low prices. Excellent wine sold cheaply always grabs our attention.

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Trials Mean Advances Never Stop
Trial Bin W157 Adelaidean-Mount Lofty Range Adelaide Hills Chardonnay 2016

Region: Adelaide Hills, SA
A small advance for Glug was installing, in mid 2017, a micro bottling machine. This means we can bottle single barrels and experiments that work. The latter I call Trial Bins and Benjamin has conducted a vast number of blending trials over many years, forever searching for the best result. I find it gratifying that now, a few of his fine achievements, can be offered to customers. Naturally the Trial Bins are limited in cases but Glug customers are very aware of the oddness of this business. The GI region called the Adelaide Hills covers a large area and while it is all good the choice area is higher which is perfect for white varieties. This Trial comes partly from this core region but as with our reds judicious additions make a more complex and satisfying wine. This is a great purchase for students of the ways of Glug.

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New Brilliant Combination Cabernet from Winemaking Team
Landaus Vintners 'Chapmans Crossing' South Australia Cabernet Sauvignon 2013 (Third Bottling)

Region: South Australia
I’m over the moon with this latest creation being a blend from our considerable stocks of Cabernet Sauvignon. Alert readers are aware that being able to see an opportunity for a smart red, take it to the tasting bench, and shortly after have it bottled at our winery premises is creating an amazing array of wonderful reds at all price points.

It began with Benjamin and Greg cleaning up all manner of odds and ends which had accumulated for years. Since then it has moved to making an array of reds in tiny quantities, careful to preserve the difference, which give our customers a constantly changing banquet, in a way that big wineries dealing in tens to hundreds of thousands of cases can never do.

The last Chapmans Crossing was made in 2011 and to give you an idea of what to expect is was a white and a blend of Semillon, Riesling and Chenin blanc from high altitude vineyards in the Hilltops, Canberra and Tumbarumba. So expect plenty of interest from this little bargain-red not white of course.

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