Also recommended: 2005 Lost Block Shiraz South Eastern Australia (85), 2005 Shiraz Reserve McLaren Vale (85).
Other wines tasted: 2006 Lost Block Pinot Noir Hunter Valley*. (Pasternak Wine Imports, Harrison, NY)

2006 Tyrrell's Wines Chardonnay Unwooded Lost Block Hunter Valley

($9) Light gold. Subdued pear and apple on the nose, with light buttered toast and mint accents. A medium-bodied, fleshy chardonnay with vaguely sweet peach and melon flavors; a brisk lemony note adds lift. Finishes bright and juicy, with good length and a lingering citrus pith note. Pretty serious for an entry-level wine.


2006 Tyrrell's Wines Chardonnay Reserve Hunter Valley

($12) Ripe peach, apple and melon aromas betray a hint of warmth. Tangy citrus and green apple flavors are finely etched and lifted by nervy acidity. Open-knit and fleshy chardonnay, with noteworthy finishing thrust and clarity, not to mention good cling.


2005 Tyrrell's Wines Chardonnay Vat 47 Hunter Valley

($35) Light gold. Smoky pear, fig and nectarine on the nose, with complicating notes of sweet butter, lees and cured meat. Impressively complex on the palate, too, showing ripe orchard and pit fruit flavors lifted by brisk acidity. Fleshes out on the finish, picking up subtle tropical fruit notes and echoing the smoky qualities. This bottling has an admirable track record for aging, but the current vintage is awfully tasty now.


2000 Tyrrell's Wines Semillon Vat 1 Hunter Valley

($35) Light yellow. Intensely mineral aromas of vibrant lime, pink grapefruit and quince are deepened by beeswax and musky herbs. Youthfully clenched citrus and pit fruit flavors are braced by firm minerality, opening slowly to show deeper melon and pear flavors. Shuts down hard on the finish, which is all rocks and dry fruit skin. There's clearly great material here but you'll have to dig for it, or simply wait-as usual for this bottling.


2005 Tyrrell's Wines Shiraz Rufus Stone Heathcote

($15) Ruby-red. Spicy cassis and kirsch on the nose, with lively floral and mineral notes adding interest. Bright and fresh but chewy, with focused dark berry flavors enlivened by zesty acidity and firmed by fine-grained tannins. Nothing sloppy or overdone about this. The persistent, clear finish features crisp notes of crushed blackberry and candied violet.

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