Lifestyle Food & Wine Zonte's Footstep
Zonte's Footstep
Written by Dr Louis Papaelias
Tuesday, 21 June 2016


In Zonte's Footstep

0716-Zontes-winemakersSurvival in today’s wine market calls not only for commitment to quality but also innovation and flair. Australian winemakers are facing competition from increasing numbers of well-priced imports that are thriving on the value of the weak Aussie dollar. Zonte’s Footstep is one winery that has risen to the challenge by cherry picking from premium South Australian locations to offer a quality range of reds and whites that will more than hold their own in the world wine stage.
The cool Adelaide Hills region is the inspiration behind the crisp aromatic whites while McLaren Vale and Langhorne Creek are the backdrop for the classic shiraz styles for which South Australia is justly famous. There is also a pleasing trend away from labelling wines purely on varietal terms. Names like “Doctoressa Di Lago” and “Z-Force” lend an air of mystery and romance which has to be good for attracting and enticing the jaded consumer.
The name Zonte’s Footstep is inspired by a 19th century zante currant vineyard. Vinification is skilful and respectful of the vineyard and grape variety and the wines, accordingly, demonstrate a varietal purity and a pleasing depth of flavour.

The Wines

2015 Doctoressa di Lago & 2015 Excalibur
Both these wines are sourced from the Woodside sub-region of the premium, elevated Adelaide Hills area and are made from Pinot Grigio (Pinot Gris) and Sauvignon Blanc respectively. Excalibur is the seafood wine of the range, showing aromatic citrus and grapefruit aromas with a crisp and lively mouthfeel. It’s a refreshing change from the many cheap and clumsy New Zealand Sauvignon Blancs currently flooding the market.
Doctoressa di Lago is a lovely food wine. Floral peach aromas, a generous melony texture on the palate and a pleasing crispness makes this example of pinot grigio a perfect companion to any number of dishes.

2014 Chocolate Factory & 2014 Lake Doctor0716-Zontes-vines
Both these deeply coloured wines are Shiraz based and come from McLaren Vale and Langhorne Creek respectively. I may well have been influenced by the name but I could really detect a rich dark chocolate aroma on the McLaren Vale wine. Rich and velvety are apt descriptors of the sensations invoked in the mouth.
Lake Doctor 2014 comes with a number of gold medals festooned on the label and it’s not hard to see why. The 5% Viognier in the blend lends an aromatic whiff of intrigue to the earthy palate of berry and spice. Fruit and tannins lend a suppleness to the mouthfeel which lingers long on the finish.

2013 Z-Force
This premium offering is composed of McLaren Vale Shiraz with 15% Petite Sirah (Durif). Selected parcels of grapes from the 1920s planted in the Seaview sub-region form the base of the wine. It is named in honour of the Australian heroes who served in the elite Z Force commando unit of World War II. A portion of the sales of this wine goes toward supporting the charitable organisation Legacy South Australia.
The wine itself is as heroic as its name suggests. Fermented in open vats with minimal use of sulphur and natural malolactic secondary fermentation, it has spent 18 months in new and used oak casks. The colour is deep and dark with purple edges with concentrated aromas of spice, red fruits and jam mixed with attractive oak. A rich, full palate with lush flavours of fruit and fine soft-balanced tannins. A very good wine that does justice to the acclaimed Seaview area.

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Does red wine cause headache? I have heard a lot of people say that it does. I have also heard many say that it is bunkum. It’s the amount of alcohol you drink that causes the vasodilatation and headache they would say. Some put it down to histamines in wine. Others point to the sulphite content as the culprit.

Personally, I have become aware over recent years that certain types of wine, mainly red, will predictably bring on a headache within an hour or so of consumption. And I am talking here about no more than two standard drinks as the trigger.

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