A few hardy souls have gone out on a limb and stocked the first vintage of our wines. These people aren't just generous, intelligent and unfeasibly good-looking, they also happen to run some of the finest bars, restaurants and shops in the land.
Here's a run-down. Find one near you and go knock on their door until they let you in. Or at least until they threaten to call the police if you don't vacate.
Special mention goes to the Hot Chicken Project in Geelong...partly because they're a project about hot chicken...but also because they took the brilliant pic above. Good-looking and skilled.
Silvereye Restaurant (coming soon)
Melbourne / Geelong
Adelaide / Clare / Vale
If you want to find one of our 2014 red wines then these places are you best bets as we're all sold out. We do have a couple of dozen of 2014 Chardonnay left in the shed if you'd like some.
Nick Ryan, star of page and spleen, quite likes our Mataro. He's a wine guy from way back. In his regular Sunday Mail column Nick blows off steam by talking about peanut butter, club sandwiches, Port Adelaide and the anti-Halal brigade. And sometimes wine.
But this has nothing to do with that.
When Nick isn't scribing hard, he can be found at Clare's finest restaurant - Seed Kitchen & Bar. Owners Guy and Candice run the show and have brought exceptional food and a winemaker's dream of a wine list to the township of Clare. We'd be equally nice about them if they hadn't listed Tonic wines too of course.
The Review (source: text message. Yes...text message)
"This better not be shit"
"It's actually fucking delicious"
Nick Ryan, 10 May 2015, with permission.
That's it...short and to the point. Works for us.
No one makes wine to garner a good score or review, but it's really satisfying when a taster really gets why you're soaking those corks. Here's what Gary Walsh had to say on Wine Front (http://www.winefront.com.au) a couple of days ago.
“54 dozen made with no subtractions and no additions, aside a touch of sulphur. Cork sealed for who knows what reason, aside the two men involved being expert cork soakers. They love to soaka da cork.
It’s a wilder, more textural style of Chardonnay and none the worse for that. Apples dusted with pepper, pickled ginger, white peach and maybe a whiff of honey. Light to medium bodied, kind of tangy and edgy, light powdery texture runs the length of the palate, and then ruby red grapefruit and spice punctuates the finish. Don’t serve it cold, and keep an open mind. Fascinating wine: the longer I spent with it, the more I liked it.” 93/100 Points - Silver. Drink: 2015 – 2018+
“I like what they’re doing with these wines. Seems that picking a little earlier to retain freshness and acidity (and thus reliance on gross excessive tartaric acid additions) then giving it plenty of time on skins to build some weight and texture is working a treat. Old oak. No fining. No filtering. A shining light for South Australian reds, of a certain style. 57 dozen made.
A spicy lighter bodied style with red fruits, hazelnut and aromatic dried herbs. Refreshing and kind of umami flavoured at the same time, with strawberries, red cherry and spice lending it a vibrant appeal. Drag of tannin and a punch of exotic spice in the finish. Delightful. Hard to stop drinking. 93 points for quality plus a bonus point for emphatic approval of style and, well, just being unreal to drink.” 94/100 Points - Gold. Drink: 2015 – 2022
“Sold out at the winery, but some around in restaurants and retail. Only 23 dozen made from a patch of 85 year old vines in NE Clare Valley.
Hats off boys, this is a bloody beauty. Red fruit, spice and perfume – playful and delightful – light bodied and fresh faced with kitten’s tongue tannin and pitch perfect fresh strawberry acidity. Shapely, lithe and superb to drink. It feels energised and energising. More of this sort of style from South Australia, please!” 94/100 Points - Gold. Drink: 2015 – 2020
All reviews by Gary Walsh at http://www.winefront.com.au (May 2015)
Well it's been a breathless start for Tonic Wines. It's the end of March now and the wines have been in bottle about two months. They've settled down nicely now and their distinct characters are starting to shine through. A sincere thank you to everyone who has given the wines a go so far.
The juicy, fresh, light to medium bodied style of the Grenache has been a bit of a hit. If it's a hot day don't even hesitate to pop it in the fridge for half an hour to get the temperature down a bit. It's crisper and much more refreshing that way. We are down to our last seven dozen of this wine so if you want to try some in a mixed dozen, get in quick.
The Mataro is darker fruited, a bit fuller and slightly more brooding at this youthful stage, though without any new oak used, it is still pretty light on its feet and crammed full of fresh fruit.
The elements of the Chardonnay: texture from the skin contact, oak from a small new barrel portion and the layered Adelaide Hills fruit, have all started to integrate together nicely. It's a cracking drink - refreshing yet complex - just what we were after.