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Today's Wine Tasting Note

© Copyright 1998 by Robin Garr. All rights reserved.

Hardy's Shiraz Hardy's non-vintage Shiraz Australian Sparkling Wine ($17.99)
Very dark reddish-purple with a frothy, startling-pink mousse that dissipates quickly. Jammy fruit and black-pepper aromas, classic Australian Shiraz. Prickly carbonation and bright, juicy fruit make it a delight on the palate and a dramatic departure from the style of traditional white sparkling wines; call it a ripe, fruity red that just happens to have bubbles. It's frankly best served ice-cold, as it's sweet enough to seem a bit cloying as it warms in the glass. Worth a try at least once for the experience, but probably not twice at this price. U.S. importer: International Cellars, Chantilly, Va. (Aug. 9, 1998)

FOOD MATCH: Served with Mexican-style turkey mole enchiladas to test the conventional wisdom that sparkling wines go well with hot-and-spicy foods, but its high alcohol content (13.7 percent) tends to heighten the otherwise pleasurable burn of ancho peppers.

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All my wine-tasting reports are consumer-oriented. In order to maintain objectivity and avoid conflicts of interest, I purchase all the wines I rate at my own expense in retail stores.

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