Sémillon, Champagne, France

Semillon is widely grown in Australia. And like Riesling is one of the very best grapes for demonstrating the different characters emerging from Australia's varied wine regions. There are many different styles produced, however, the Hunter Valley is by far the most famous. Semillon from the Hunter Valley is lean, pale wine with citrus, grapefruit and flintiness in its flavour. With a few years bottle age it turns into a honeyed, nutty, classic wine. The Barossa Valley tends to be the most luscious, often with oak age, it has aromas of peaches and mangoes. Margaret River’s versions are a fine balance between these two styles, and they age well too. It is most often blended with Sauvignon Blanc to produce the regions famous blends.

In France, it is the main grape for Sauternes. Elsewhere in Bordeaux it is the most widely planted white grape and is blended with Sauvignon Blanc to produce the dry whites of Graves. In Bordeaux, where it can be aged in oak, it produces wines that are high in alcohol and extract, but relatively low in aroma and acidity. Its thin skin makes it very susceptible to botrytis which is prerequisite for the making of Sauternes.
Champagne is a wine region to the north-east of Paris where wine has been grown since the Romans first planted in the 5th century and the region is most well known for the Sparkling wine that goes by the regions name.

Champagne is made from 3 grapes. The two red grapes Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier and the white grape Chardonnay. All three are commonly blended though a ‘blanc de blanc’ meaning ‘white from white’ indicates that only Chardonnay was used. Conversely a ‘blanc de noir’ or ‘white from black’ indicates that the two red grapes were used.

A common misconception is that Champagne was invented by Dom Pérignon. Although this is not the case, he made considerable contributions to the quality and production methods used in the region. The very first bottles of Champagne were created by accident, and coined ‘the devil’s wine’ for all the popping corks. Sparkling wine in Australia was referred to as Champagne but this practise has long been disallowed.

Methode Champenoise is the traditional method by which Champagne is produced and if you see Millisime on a bottle, it represents the fact that the wine comes from a particular vintage rather than being blended, which is the more common practice.

Icons such as Dom Pérignon and Krug are world renowned, but we find as much pleasure in the smaller Champagne houses such as Gosset and Jacquinot. Magnums are perfect for the festive occasions and half bottles are also available.
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  1. Christmas Dinner Dozen

    We've got the perfect Christmas dinner dozen for the big day! 6 wines to match with all the types of food you usually have for dinner!
    -French Champagne for arrival drinks and oysters
    -Aged Semillon with Salmon and ... Learn More

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