The third Cellar Door we visited in the Barossa, Rockford, provides a unique Australian experience. The winery was built in the same style as the original 1850’s stone cottage and barn. Their trademark is the use of traditional wine-making equipment, principles and practices in the vineyard. Everything is hand-pruned and hand-picked. In the words of famed Australian wine critic James Halliday, “Rockford can only be described as an icon, no matter how overused that word may be.” (Hear, hear.)
If you are looking for a Washington winery that produces consistently great wine at a decent price point, look no further than Lauren Ashton Cellars. We have enjoyed these impressive wines since the day when talented winemaker Kit Singh and his wife Riinu opened their Woodinville winery. And their two June releases continue in the fine tradition we’ve come to know and respect; extraordinary wines for an enduring value.
So read on to find out more about Lauren Ashton Cellars 2014 Syrah and 2018 Cuvée Meline. Both were released early this month, and you do not want to miss them.
On a recent trip to New Zealand, we had the fortune to spend time at the country’s most-awarded winery, Villa Maria. Thanks to our host, talented and knowledgeable winemaker Kathrin (Kat) Jankowiec, we tasted many amazing wines at the Cellar Door in Marlborough. Of note, we have enjoyed Villa Maria’s popular wines many times in the past. This made our experience in New Zealand even more exciting and memorable.
Villa Maria crafts excellent wine at affordable prices. Wines from 28 grape varieties are exported to more than 60 countries. Many are widely available in the United States, and we strongly recommend you try them.
In March, we visited Soul Growers in Australia’s Barossa Valley and discovered two things. First, Soul Growers wines are fantastic. Second, the guys behind Soul Growers are as hilarious as they are dedicated to making fine wine. Soul Growers has a unique concept, with winemaking revolving around the growers who create the fruit. It all began in 1998 when four friends in the corporate world — Stu, Paul, Tom and Leigh — decided to join forces and create wines and a brand that spoke to the Barossa.
Stu hosted our visit, which was simultaneously fun and educational. And wow, we love Soul Growers wines. We are not surprised that renowned Australian wine critic James Halliday gave Soul Growers five stars. And the good news – their wines are available in the U.S. and Canada.