A toast to travel

Pinot Noir

Disclaimer: the wine products featured in this post were generously supplied by online wine distributor Wine Selectors. Despite this, the opinions are totally honest, and of course, 100% my own!

I don’t know about you, but I feel like something is missing when I don’t have a trip to look forward to. So much so, that while on one trip, we usually start talking about and planning the next. If there’s nothing on my travel horizon, I fill the void with daytrips or urban adventures to far-flung suburbs in search of something new and delicious to eat, or to experience a window into another culture. But lately this hasn’t been enough. I need ‘real’ travel!

Enter – real travel plans! This time next week, I’ll be soaring away to India, to explore the Ganges and Hooghly Rivers by boat, with time in Delhi, Varanasi and Calcutta, plus some far-flung villages in between. And a few months later, we’re Southeast Asia-bound, for city fun in Bangkok and Kuala Lumpur, and some family beach time. Cue – major excitement and cause for consuming bubbles (err, any excuse will do!).

Wine Selectors have released the Chef Series┬árange of wines, with each wine matched with dishes by some well known local chefs. The wines were developed in conjunction with some highly regarded, handpicked wine producers to culminate in a┬ácarefully curated wine range. The Alistair Macleod Sparkling Chardonnay Pinot Noir NV, by Tasmanian producer Josef Chromy, offers the perfect celebratory drink. Think a beautiful light straw colour, sufficiently dry yet with enough of a hint of fruit flavour, and the ideal match for Brisbane-based Alistair’s rock oysters suggestion (his recipes are available on the Wine Selectors site). This is a serious contender for my new favourite local sparkling, and makes me wonder why we sometimes fork out for actual champagne when quality Australian sparkling can be so good?!

We also tried a Tasmanian pinot noir from the range. I’ve had a slight obsession with Tassie pinot this year after an amazing long weekend in Hobart, so drinking it now reminds me of our Hobart restaurant and bar hopping, and a sunny afternoon spent soaking up all things MONA at their adjoining winery and bar. Bliss. The Ian Parmenter Pinot Noir 2011 (also by Josef Chromy) was up there with the best I’ve tasted – smooth, delicate, intricate and highly drinkable. Ian is a cooking show presenter and director of the Tasting Australia festival, and has matched this wine to a dish of roast pork with prune and macadamia stuffing. It also goes wonderfully well with a cheese plate.

Our Hobart sojourn provided a taster of Tasmania’s amazing wine and produce, and I’m loving discovering more Tasmanian wines from afar. I think a return trip might be brewing…something to think about on the plane to India perhaps!

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