26 September 2023

Tasmania Sparkles

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By Christine Salins.


Holm Oak 2022 Protege Pinot Noir

“In Tasmania we’re well-built for winter. We know how to do it properly and that usually involves a whisky or a pinot,” enthused Tourism Tasmania’s new CEO, Sarah Clark, at a lunch at Botanic House in Sydney last week.

Clark was telling the Australian Society of Travel Writers all the reasons why Aussies should consider a winter holiday in the island state. The invigorating air, snow-capped mountains, and quirky events like Dark Mofo and the Huon Valley Mid-Winter Festival presented the opportunity to “cut loose with a little revelry”, she said.

And then, of course, there’s the food and wine – “some of the best produce in the planet,” she continued.

For the last two years, Tourism Tasmania has been facilitating a program called Open The Gate with around 100 farmers and businesses across Tasmania participating to build unique products and experiences for the visitor market.

Josef Chromy Rose

While Clark was expanding on some of those offerings, more than 100 publicists and writers, including yours truly, dined on dishes matched with the four beautiful wines featured here.

One of the highlights was a guided tasting of the Mumm Tasmania Brut Prestige NV launched in October last year. Global brand manager Ambar Maddox led a “mindful tasting” of this superb sparkling wine that was created in a collaboration between France’s G.H. Mumm and Pernod Ricard Winemakers.

The newest addition to Mumm’s Terroir range follows a similar collaboration between Mumm and New Zealand winemakers which saw Mumm Marlborough Brut Prestige and Mumm Marlborough Vintage Rosé launched in 2020.

The Terroir range celebrates prestigious wine regions known for producing exceptional pinot noir, building on Maison Mumm’s 200-year history of crafting pinot noir forward wines. Pernod Ricard’s sparkling winemaker, Trina Smith, worked closely with G.H. Mumm chef de caves, Laurent Fresnet, to perfect Mumm Tasmania.

Mumm Tasmania Brut Prestige

According to Wine Tasmania, 37% of all grapes from the 2022 Tasmanian vintage are bound for sparkling wine production and this looks set to grow. Tasmanian sparkling wines have achieved such finesse in recent years that the whole world is taking notice. Better yet, they sell for a fraction of the price of Champagne, making a tasting of Tasmanian bubbles a very happy exercise indeed.

For Maddox, a proud Tasmanian, launching Mumm Tasmania has been one of the highlights of her career. “We wanted to create something that is representative of the region and representative of that beautiful pristine nature that Tasmania is known for,” she said.

Mumm Tasmania Brut Prestige NV, $40: Produced using méthode traditionnelle, the same process used by Maison Mumm. Sophisticated and refined with complex aromas of warm spices and vibrant flavours of apples and red berries. Delicate acidity, creamy texture and an intense, lingering finish make this wine super appealing.

42 Degrees Pinot Grigio, $29: Rich and generous, this distinctive wine from Tasmania’s Coal River Valley has peach and pear aromas, delicate tropical fruit flavours and a slight citrus zing. Fresh and easy drinking.

Josef Chromy Rosé, $33: This dry, savoury pink made from 100% Pinot Noir paired nicely with an entrée of crispy quail and Royal Gala apples at the Botanic House lunch. Bright aromas of strawberries and cream, generous raspberry and watermelon flavours, and a zesty finish.

Holm Oak Protégé Pinot Noir, $28: Classic Tasmanian Pinot Noir, silky smooth and bursting with cherry and strawberry notes. Aromatic with some underlying spicy complexity, bright, elegant and simply a joy to drink.

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