Alex's top wine selection for a long summer lunch


We spoke with our Head Sommelier, Alex Kirkwood to discover his top selection of the perfect summer wines to enjoy over a long lunch at Aria Sydney.

2018 Stargazer Riesling Coal River Valley

Sam Connew hit the ground running when she landed and established her label Stargazer based out of Coal River Valley. Sam was an early leader in breaking the mold of what we always knew in Tasmania. Whilst we have come to expect fantastic Sparkling wines in the early days and therefore top end still wines from Pinot Noir and Chardonnay that followed, Sam has been one of the stars that lighted a fire and sparked new life into Tassie. A bit of a favourite of mine, again this release is packed full of flavour, layered with texture and nails that cool climate freshness and crunch. The use of a hint of skins and lees work to build some weight, whilst still retaining the purity, line and length that we love about this grape.

2016 Applecross Pinot Noir Yarra Valley

Trying this for the first time late last year, I was immediately taken by the level of complexity and appeal. Certainly not to be surprised when this is side project or love affair of David Bicknell away from his day job as Chief winemaker of highly acclaimed Oakridge wines. The vineyard is situated on the top of the hill in Gladysdale and delivers everything you want from Yarra Pinot. Delicate fruit weight with a gentle frame of tannin, loaded with fresh red florals, a pinch of spice, torn wild greens and bursting with redcurrant and cherry. This works on so many levels from steamed mussles, barbecue squid and smoked salmon, there is something for every Pinot Noir lover in this.

NV Geoffroy Elixir Demi-Sec Champagne

With all the rage in recent years geared towards bone dry expressions of Champagne, we seem to have been scared off by a little spoonful of sugar. So in saying that, it’s incredibly refreshing to drink a bottle of slightly sweeter bubbles that retains such poise. The wines of Geoffroy (who are based in Cumieres) are pure, focused and taut in their youth, so to have an offering that delivers 35g/l of sugar with such balance is a welcomed addition to the offering. A great place to start with off-dry Champagne (although not so easy to find and hard to go up in quality from here). Excellent to finish a meal alongside fruit salad and sorbet. Even better just to quench your thirst after a day at the beach!

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