Over the years I have hosted numerous private tastings and dinners. When I got the call that the team at Telstra wanted to do a second one I knew I was in for a rowdy night. So I roped in some help in the form of Rob Hall from Kellybrook to entertain them.
We decided to showcase the range that Kellybrook does so we looked at whites and reds from two tiers and also their impressive cider, perry and apple brandy. All of this was complemented by a set course meal at Mezzo. Those guys sure know how to put on a feast and how to pour wines in the correct order at the correct time while we enjoy ourselves.
Kellybrook was established in 1962 and has quietly gone about making lovely wines and cider from their property in Wonga Park. On site they have one of the oldest vineyards in the Yarra. The vineyards cover about 15 hectares and include a diverse range of plantings. The Kelly’s also have quite a cider apple orchard and make a range of cider, perry and even apple brandy from the Estate.
In June 2011 Rob Hall joined the team after spending almost 10 years at Mount Mary. He was keen to spread his wings and try some new and interesting things with wines and introduced the Estate range wines. Made exclusively from fruit from the vineyard in Wonga Park, they are something special for sure. As you’ve probably gathered by now, I am a huge fan of the Estate range. But that is not to down play the enjoyment and value you get from the other wines and the wonderful ciders and perry.
We started off with the lovely Kellybrook Champagne Cider which is a creamy, spicy, floral and slightly phenolic masterpiece. Made using the traditional Champagne production methods and allowed to use the term Champagne only by the grace of the Champenoise it is a must try drink of the range.
Then we hooked into a bracket of whites. Kellybrook Riesling 2011 was limey, dry, minerally with just a hint of development, bitterness and phenolic grip. A good wine and great value. The Kellybrook Deluxe White 2012 offered a dry, spicy, lychee and floral experience with a viscous and round palate finishing very floral. This stood up to antipasto with vigour. Finally we had a look at Kellybrook Estate Chardonnay 2012, a delicate, creamy, fine and citrus, aniseed nose met us. Then Stone fruits and caramel came through on a silky, seamless palate. Just delicious.
The red bracket kicked off with Kellybrook Estate Pinot Noir 2012. Although light in colour it offered a complex array of dry herbs, stems, cherry, spice and more. The palate is lean, crunchy, focussed and finishing with a perfume of roses and red berries. Yum! Not to be out done Kellybrook Estate Shiraz 2012 came to the party with bolder Rhone like characters of herbs, currants, white and black pepper, mineral/limestone and iodine. The palate is elegant and restrained with dry, gritty tannins. Seriously impressive drinking. Then we had a look at the mature and earthy/truffley Kellybrook Cabernet Sauvignon Merlot 2008 which offers plums, cassis and violets one a fleshy and dry palate.
To finish the show (or finish off the guests maybe?) we enjoyed a glass of the Kellybrook Apple Brandy, which we found out is the same base material as the Champagne Cider albeit having sat in a solera that started in 1981. It was sweet, caramelly, spicy, long and floral. Very clean finishing it was well timed while Silvio poured us some red fruited, tart, clean and phenolic Kelly Brothers Apple Cider and the sweet, round, floral, peppery and chalky Kelly Brothers Pear Cider.
All the wines listed here can be ordered via 0418 23 04 82 or Philip@thewinedepository.com.au . You can also book your own private dinner through the same channels.