In Vino Veritas – Kreglinger Estate
Founded shortly before the dawn of the nineteenth century, Kreglinger Wine Estates not only dominated the old world from their headquarters in Antwerp but eventually extended their operations to Southern Australia – a move that retained their European origins but also managed to skilfully incorporate what terra australis has to offer both on the mainland and Tasmania.
Eventually acquiring the Tasmanian entity Pipers Brook, which is held in high esteem for its cold climate wines defined by the local volcanic soil, and the South Australia Norfolk Rise Vineyards, whose drops are infused with a borderline trademark fruity complexity and coined by the local terroir of the sandstone soil profiles, Kreglinger’s expansion did not go at the expense of vibrancy but managed to preserve the idiosyncratic charm of the respective regions.
I first came across Kreglinger as they were part of the annual Vin Diemen Taste of Tasmania event in Sydney, where I was proffered their excellent sparkling wines, the trademark of which is that it is bottle fermented and aged for less than seven years before being unleashed to caress the palates of those with a discerning taste. Rich, vibrant and covering a wide spectrum of intense flavours is what came to mind after tasting their Vintage Brut and my curiosity was sparked, which ultimately resulted in digging deeper into their portfolio.
What caught my eye at the Vin Diemen event was the immaculate packaging, which was then framed by an engaging conversation with a knowledgeable gentleman who turned out to be the winemaker, i.e. Luke
In layman’s terms he laid down both the history of the vineyard as well as what forms the DNA of Pipers Brook. The proof is in the pudding, so I had to taste what was described to me as having emerged from the cool climate viticulture and an environment where fruits are married with savoury flavours and textured herbs.
Piper Brook’s dark and red berry fruity Pinot Noir was the first the top of my mouth was exposed to and teased by the earthy spices on the nose, in terms of flavours that were framed by nuances of forest berries, delicious highlights comprised of cherry dark chocolate and lingering spicy bits.
A wonderful wine to have by itself or with a meal and one that set the bar high.
Next up was the Gewürztraminer: In essence, this pale textured drop is a tour de force in exotic aromas of flowery character, lychee, ginger spice and minerals. A near perfect companion to the spicy meals I like to indulge in, specifically Thai cuisine.
Piper Brook’s Chardonnay is more subtle, light in nature yet not less complex: I like its zesty crispness and acidity which provides the forum for the apple, oaky and pear notes to shine through. Matching it with smoked salmon enhanced the enjoyment quite a bit as well. Being not usually a huge chardonnay drinker, I found this one to be a new favourite in this category.
Last not least, the young Riesling had to be tried: The bouquet is a melange of zingy acidity that has hints of kerosene, delightfully though, and it seamlessly transitions to the palate where oaky flavours blend with nutty, buttery and burnt-lemon complexities.
If you are keen to expand your horizons and delve deeper into what terra australis has to offer, you’d miss out if you did not explore Pipers Brook.