Australia’s First Families of Wine, an #ARSE4 tasting

When someone who you only know through Twitter, asks you if you want to attend an event called #ARSE4 then you have to consider what you might be getting yourself into.

Luckily, it quickly transpired that the event was Andrew’s Really Secret Event #4, a wine tasting to be held in London with both the location, and the type of wines to be revealed on the day.

Fast forward to a recent Sunday outside of Farringdon station where a group of bloggers were thirsty, and ready for some wine. Five minutes later we had turned up at Vinoteca (note: usually closed on Sundays), and were faced with Australia’s First Family of Wine.

In a speed dating style event, the producers had around 3 minutes to talk about their wine to a small group, and questions were asked.

The great thing with this format is that a lot of the people representing the brand were actually between first to fourth generation winemakers, and not just a PR!

The wines that were tasted are below, and in general they were all great but two standout items for me where the Yalumba, The Scribbler Shiraz and the Howard Park Riesling. It was also really nice to be able to taste some more Semillon, which I’ve only really usually had as part of a blend, and never on it’s own. (I was first introduced to it only three days priot at a tasting by Matthew Jukes, as part of his look into the 100 best Australian wines).

Semillon – McWilliams, Mount Pleasant Lovedale (2005)
~ £25 [Wine Society, Berry Brothers & Rudd]

Semillon – Tyrrell’s, Winemaker’s Selection Vat 1 Hunter Semillon (1999)
~ £29.99 [Wine Society ]

Riesling – Howard Park, Riesling (2009)
~ £13.49 [, Bibendum,, Nebuchadnezzar Wines Ltd]

Riesling – Jim Barry, The Lodge Hill Riesling (2008)
~ £9.67 [AG Wines,, Hennings Wine Merchants]

Viognier – Tahbilk, Tahbilk Viognier (2009)
~ £11.99 [Oxford Wine Company,]

Chardonnay – Brown Brothers, Banksdale Chardonnay (2008)
~ £8.99 [Waitrose]

Chardonnay – De Bortoli, Estate Chardonnay (2008)
~ £13.33 [Chapel Place Wines]

Rousanne – d’Arenberg, Money Spider Rousanne (2009)
~ £11.99 [Bibendum,]

Shiraz – Henschke, Mount Edelstone Shiraz (2005)
~ £60 [Noel Young, Harper Wells, Wine Direct, Drinks Direct]

Shiraz – Yalumba, The Scribbler (2008)
~ £12.95 [Berry Brothers & Rudd,,]

Cabernet Sauvignon – Wakefield, Estate Cabernet Sauvignon (2008)
~ £11.65 [Four Walls Wine Company]

Once the wines had been tasted, we moved onto a stunning three course lunch of.  Lot’s more wines appeared that we hadn’t necessarily tasted earlier, and I admit I lost track of what was in my glass as the afternoon had moved on from tasting, to drinking.

Thanks Vinoteca for the wonderful food:

Of course, many thanks to Andrew Barrow for organising, and to the fellow bloggers:


  1. Andrew says:

    It was rather fun; nice of you to pop down ;-)

  2. Neil says:

    Thankyou for the invite!

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