I'm just back from a week tramping about in the Lamington Mountains in south-east Queensland (Australia). The air was crisp and cold, the mountains were covered in subtropical rainforest, and there were exotic and wonderful birds to look at. The proprietors of the guest house I stayed at also have branched out into wine making, with a vineyard at lower altitude in the valley at Canungra. I always like to try the local wine, so I tried three of their reds and one white with meals while I stayed. Now, Queensland is rather far north for wine growing, as a general rule, but there are a number of wineries in the southern parts of the state. Previous attempts with Queensland wines haven't impressed me much but I was pleasantly surprised by the Cabernet Sauvignon in the range. Notes follow. Years unknown but probably 2005/6 for the reds and 2007/8 for the white, being the current releases; I ordered by the glass and they came to the table already poured.
O'Reilly's Canungra Valley Vineyards: Viola Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon
Fruity without being a fruit-bomb. Aromatic, plush stewed plum flavours, with a hint of violets. Smooth in the mouth, rounded texture. Pleasant.
Shane Reserve Shiraz
Thin mouth-feel, but quite dense in colour. White pepper on the nose. Savoury rather than fruity. Tannic. A bit one-dimensional. Unremarkable.
Vince Reserve Verdelho
Lively; fruity but not sweet. Lemon-peel to the fore, some green grass and kiwi fruit. Pleasant with food, but a bit boisterous to drink on its own.
Bernard Reserve Chambourcin
I approached this with high hopes: I am fond of chambourcin. Alas.
In all the years I've been drinking wine, this was the first glass of wine I have ever sent back as being undrinkable.
Anyway - I post these for interest.