I’m regularly on the hunt for everyday wines. Certainly tasting and writing about wines in other categories is of interest as well. But when I taste something that’s bargain priced, which I can recommend, it hits a particular sweet spot for me. For a long time now our shelves have been loaded with low priced wines from Australia; some of them hit the spot, but a large number of them are indistinguishable from one another. Today I’ll look at two well priced Australian offerings that set themselves apart in a positive way. First up is the Fisheye Winery 2011 Pinot Grigio. The fruit for this offering was sourced in South Eastern Australia. 360,000 cases of this wine were produced. It’s available in 750 ml and 1.5 L bottles as well as 3 liter boxed wine Casks. They’re priced respectively at $7, $12 and $18. Ginger and peach aromas jump from the glass with conviction. Lychee fruit, apricots and continued peach characteristics are prominent throughout the palate. Lemon zest, white pepper and coriander emerge on the finish which has fair length. This Pinot Grigio is fresh, vibrant and loaded with flavorful bright fruits. This is a great choice as a party wine. It pairs well with light appetizers and also works nicely as a welcome wine or aperitif. The 3 Liter Box works out to about $4 a bottle. If for some reason your party guests don’t finish it these modern versions of boxed wine will drink well for 30 days after opening.
The Fisheye Winery 2011 Shiraz was also produced from fruit sourced in South Eastern Australia. 115,000 cases of this Shiraz were produced and it’s available nationally. It’s also available in 750ml ($7), 1.5L ($12) bottles and 3L ($18) bag in a box style casks. Black raspberry and blueberry aromas are joined by vanilla bean on the nose of this Shiraz. Black cherry, blackberry, clove and cinnamon flavors are all present throughout the palate. Copious amounts of juicy black and red plum appear on the finish which has a hint of Kirsch liqueur. This is a straight forward, fruity Shiraz that’s also proportionate and very food friendly. As with the Pinot Grigio I believe the 3L Box is a particularly good value for a party, or everyday drinking that won’t bust your budget.
When I taste wines made in large quantities, that are widely available and well priced I’m looking for particular attributes. First and foremost of course they should be enjoyable wines to quaff. They should also have a taste profile that promises wide appeal. These selections from Fisheye hit the mark in those areas. If you haven’t tried any of the newer versions of quality and eco-friendly boxed wines that have become readily available the last few years, the Fisheye wines are a fine place to start.