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Tempranillos Role As A New Varietal Wine In Australia

Tempranillo is the premium red wine grape variety from the Rioja region in Spain. It is now challenging Sangiovese as the up and coming star of the red varietal wine scene in Australia.

New plantings throughout Australian wine regions over the past five years are just coming into bearing. In fact on a percentage basis Tempranillo is growing in popularity more rapidly than any other variety.

What makes this variety so exciting? Well, it makes wines which have good colour and good fruit flavours along with low acid and low tannins. This adds up to an easy drinking style. The wine also goes well with American oak.

In the vineyard the variety has a short growing season which makes it suitable for cooler areas.

In Spain the variety is the backbone of the wines of the Rioja and the Ribera del Duero regions in Northern and Central Spain. In these regions it is often blended with Graciano or Cabernet sauvignon playing a minor role. It is a component of Ribera del Duero's famous Vega Sicilia, the Spanish equivalent to Grange.

In Portugal the variety is used as a minor component in port, and some red table wines. Elsewhere in the world the major plantings are in Argentine and California. In the latter region it is called Valdepenas and is regarded as a unsuitable for making fine wine.

Tempranillo has taken off in Australia only in the past few years. Brown Brothers have been a pioneer of the variety, but there are now over 50 producers in about half of Autralias sixty wine regions. Although McLaren Vale has the highest number of producers variety is widely planted throughout the mainland Australian wine regions. The highest rated Tempranillo in James Halliday's Wine Companion 2005 is from Manton's Creek Vineyard in the Mornington Peninsula. Casella Wines, the makers of the hugely successful [yellowtail] range are also interested in the variety. They received a silver medal for a 2003 Tempranillo at the Australian Alternative Varieties Wine Show 2004.

The obvious food match is to go with Spanish style dishes. A lighter bodied Tempranillo would go well with tapas, those delightful little snacks that originally were designed for accompanying sherry. A little plate of olives, some prawns and a few slices of Chorizo sausage may just what is needed.

The Spanish also love jamon, dry cured ham. Many bars in Spain have dozens of hams hanging up and there is always a ham in a special rack ready to be thinly carved for a snack to accompany a glass of wine. Sheep farming is a major industry in the in the Rioja and the Ribera del Duero regions. Hence grilled and especially roast lamb are local specialties, as well as the ideal accompaniment to Tempranillo. Sheep milk cheeses, roast stuffed peppers and vegetable casseroles would also be enhanced by a glass or two of these fine wines.

What then can we expect in future from Tempranillo in Australia? It is an interesting fact is that the variety is being tried in many wine regions. Virtually all of the plantings in Australia are new and the vineyard managers and winemakers are just starting to climb the learning curve. Some enthusiasts say Tempranillo is the next big thing in Australian red wines; others think that the Italian variety Sangiovese will triumph. The next few years will tell, in the meantime there will be some interesting wines to try.

About The Author

Darby Higgs is manager and editor of Vinodiversity a web based guide to Australian wine made with less common wine varieties.

Ten interesting facts about Tea.Lorraine Bevere It is now known that men who drink black tea which contains catechins are 50% less likely to die of ischemic heart disease. This happens when our arteries become clogged and are unable to function as they should due to constriction.

The dearest teabag in the world was commissioned for the 75'th anniversary of the PG TIPS tea company. The bag was filled with two hundred and eighty diamonds and expensive limited edition tea leaves. The bag cost seven thousand five hundred pounds and was sold at auction in aid of a Children's hospital in Great Britain.

For many years we have known that men in Asian countries who drink green tea have very low instances of prostate cancer. Many prominent researchers think that this is due to green tea containing many powerful antioxidants and preventative anti-cancer agents.

In recent Australian studies CSIRO scientists found that the occurrence of skin cancer in laboratory mice was greatly reduced when they were given black tea. It is thought that polyphenols which are very strong antioxidants and are contained in the tea are the most likely reason for this phenomenon

To get rid of puffy eyes lie on your bed or wherever and place either a moist teabag or tea compress over both of your eyes and leave for about 20 minutes. Swelling around the eyes will disappear and your eyes will return to their former glory

Tea comes from the leaves of a tree called Camellia sinensis. The three main types of tea are Black, Oolong and Green. Herbal tea does not come from the leaves of a tea plant, therefore, is not considered to be real tea. Roots, stems, flowers and parts of plants are used to make herbal tea

Use tea to kill warts. The tannic acid found in tea is said to be just as effective in killing warts as many wart removers that you can purchase over the counter at the local drug store! Soak a black tea bag in hot water, and then place the damp bag on the wart itself for fifteen minutes a couple of times each day. Slowly the wart will shrink and soon disappear.

Legend has it that a Chinese emperor was the first to discover Tea when some leaves were blown by chance into a bowl contain some boiling hot water. The tea we drink today is exactly the same and the brewing process has never been interfered with.

Did you know that Turkey is a nation of mainly Tea drinker? In fact Turkey is now the worlds number one nation when it comes to tea drinking. Many Turks drink a staggering twenty to thirty cups per day each and tea is now practically their national drink.

Recent studies have shown that drinking anywhere between one half and two cups of tea every day may promote fertility by stopping abnormalities in our chromosomes. In a recent test two hundred and fifty women drank as little as half a cup of tea per day and their pregnancy rates were twice as high as those who did not.

Copyright Lorraine Bevere -

Another short Wine Vino review

Tempranillos Role As A New Varietal Wine In Australia

Tempranillo is the premium red wine grape variety from the Rioja region in Spain. It is now challenging Sangiovese as the up and coming star o...

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