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wine of the week 19/04/2009

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   De Bortoli (Australia) Gulf Station Pinot Noir 2008
Australia's Yarra Valley and the nearby Mornington Peninsula are two of the southern henisphere's prime Pinot Noir territories, and this excellent mid-range example from De Bortoli delivers the goods vintage after vintage. Just replacing the lovely 2007 in stores, the 2008 edition has the same winning formula of freshness and poise, allied to ripe, attractively full flavour. Brimming with smoky, swirling, tobacco and strawberry pulp aromas, there's a schisty, earthy edge and plenty of complexity. On the palate the fruit is intensely sweet - really pinging across the mid-palate with its concentration - and yet the spice, warm, truffle and woodsmoke complexity and structural line of the tannins and acidity never waivers. Truly great Pinot at its price this, and I have to say it would be pretty damn good if it cost twice as much. 9.99, Sainsbury's.