WWWBW1 2002 Yalumba Vintage Merlot

Lenn at Lenndevours had a fine proposal for a wine blogging day. Drink a bottle of New World sub-$15 Merlot. It’s a big ask.

Merlot is rarely seen by itself in Western Australia, usually it’s seen blended with Cabernet. South Australia has Merlot and I don’t know why but South Australia is still a great mystery to me even if it is the gateway to the rest of Australia. Because of it appearing as a combo I thought that maybe I could set it up as whether it’s Simon or Garfunkel, then I realise I hated both of them, especially Paul Simon with his kitschy rip offs of African Music to salvage his career. What happened to Art Garfunkel? Why am I talking about them?

Less than favourable conditions to taste wine with bogeys stretching back to my toes and mid week knackerment but onwards I went, ordered a Margherita pizza and stopped in at the bottle shop on the way there. The Merlot range is one of the cheapest and I had little trouble finding the one under the budget limit. I chose the most likely to be available elsewhere and chose “Australia’s Oldest Family Owned Brewery” – Yalumba and their 2002 Vintage Merlot from South Oz. Noticed a Houghton Pemberton Merlot, which is from WA but it was over budget.


Excellent, and spectacular value giving French wines 5 or 6 times its price a run for their money. Superb with Meat or Pasta.


[Blows nose]. Promising palate, smooth entry, is that vanilla there, custard?, certainly berries, which ones?-not sure. The initial smoothness give way to sharpness which hangs around a bit longer than I’d like. Certainly better than the $10 bottle of Sangiovese I had the other day but inoffensiveness stymies inspiration. Pizza didn’t interfere with the taste but I suggest something to eat soon after to finish the finish.


Cheap but the most interesting thing about it was for West Australians to say oh isn’t Merlot usually blended. To be fair to the age of it, it was close to the 2-3 years of recommended cellaring. Forgettable, but as an added feature it’s got a little perforated square on the back label that you can tear off and keep for future reference. New World eh!

This will in fact be the last drop of booze for me for the next month. I should have had two bottles. Drink posts for September will be more like this but shakier.

!Roundupdate: Lenn has (mer)lots



  1. tokyo goat’s avatar

    Isn’t red wine the absolute worst drink to have when you have a cold/flu??

  2. Anthony’s avatar

    A whiskey,lemon, and honey taste off may have been a better move.

    Welcome to the curious addiction that’s blogging -is that an Expressway crash barrier I spy in the head pic?

  3. Anonymous’s avatar

    It’s a GOLDFISH with a BLOG. A GOLDFISH!!


  4. Jeanne’s avatar

    What happened to Art Garfunkel? Well, he and Paul Simon have obviously used up the obscene amounts of money they made from the Concert in Central Park in 1982 and toured again this year – I saw them in Hyde Park in July! Believe it… or not!

    Oh and thanks for telling me about the wine IMBB event… Old buddy old pal…

  5. Anthony’s avatar

    It’s not real gold though y’know

    [Course notes on charming evasion 203] Look I’m sorry about that, I just assumed you knew about it anyway and besides your review would make mine look like crap. Not too late, what time is it over there? 9am, no worries.

  6. Anthony’s avatar

    I heard they’d not got on together too well toward the end of their original career, were there any fisticuffs or was I thinking of the Everly Brothers. What is it about these revival tours and when’s that nice Richie Valens going to tour?

  7. Santos’s avatar

    how is it that on my site you are anthony with a capital A? is that ‘shakier’ as in DTs or shakier as in addition of ice/dairy/protein?

    that fish with a blog is a bunny boiler, for sure

  8. tokyo goat’s avatar

    bastard…just spent 45 minutes reading up on Ritchie Valens. Handsome devil that he was and all…I blame you. http://www.ritchievalens.net/index.html

  9. AnthonyJ’s avatar

    I’m confused. Does this mean that I can just tell you what I want you to drink, and you’ll go out, buy it, drink it and blog the results? A service whose time has truly come.
    In which case, I want you to try single malts costing over $70. I’ll check back tomorrow. Forget about the damn wagon. None of the fun people are on that wagon, and you know it.
    BTW the goldfish has blurred the line between blogging and merchandising in a profoundly disturbing way. Makes me want to buy a fourpack of IZZE.
    Damn! I mean it makes me want to drink IZZE.
    No! I mean it makes me angry. Angry enough to drink IZZE

  10. Anthony’s avatar

    Good find on the IZZE. I’m “A”nthony to help out your capital letter deficiency, in vowel glutted French sites I’m “nthy” .
    DT’s – arrgh there’s a baby on the roof, and speaking of shakier The Great Meatshakes Experiment (chicken vichyssoise, no? billies).

    Well I had La Bamab in my head for three hours (soy capitain? moy capitain?) – frustrating tip of the tounge references are the dark underbelly here, feel free to come over and slap me.

    Anthony J
    Wagon – the wheels’ll be falling of this baby come October, trust me.
    Yeah the moist clammy handshake of blogging and merchandising. Blogging is pure “garage” [air guitars].
    The free to air service Spiceblog does have a price restriction on drinking requests, however if you call my new timed call service I’ll drink whatever you like. I’m waiting.

  11. Jeanne’s avatar

    Hmm, the Everly Brothers. You do know they were the upport act for S&G in Hyde Park in July?? I’m afraid no fisticuffs from either act – their walking frames kept them far enough apart that their fists could not reach each other’s faces…

    And I believe Ritchie Valens will be supporting Jim Morrison on tour later this year.

    Yo no soy marinero, soy capitan. Move over Kikkoman.

  12. Anthony’s avatar

    Ha! Took me five minutes to work out the Kikkoman reference, I’m losing it. Check out this little piece I just found though on the Everly’s:
    The unrelenting performance schedule led to an addiction to speed for both. Don had a nervous breakdown. They were feuding with each other, and this culminated in a violent breakup between the two in the Summer of 1973 when Phil smashed his guitar to pieces on stage and walked out.Rock! I heard it had something to do with frying eggs in others brother’s pan or something, can’t find the quote of the words used in the breakup concert but they were pretty classic. If anyone out there knows…

    Jim! He really did fake his death and go to South America, let’s hope he hasn’t been writing any poetry since 1973 or you may have to finish the job.

  13. Santos’s avatar

    i will never look at izze the same way again.

    what is it with the everlys and frying pans? didn’t erin (daughter of don) chase ex-hubby axl rose around with one?

  14. Anthony’s avatar

    oi cheers for that, the plot thickens, Axl’s “been dancing with Mr SilverStone”

    Look is anybody going to talk about Merlot here?

  15. Jeanne’s avatar

    Well, you see, I might have, if “somebody” had told me about the WIMBB Merlot day…

    OK, here goes. On their 1962 album “Instant Party”, the Everly Brothers recorded a song called “Bye Bye Blackbird”. The French word for blackbird is “merle”. The diminutive of “merle” is “merlot” – and merlot grapes were probably named thus because of their dark, almost black colour.

    See, I can talk about Merlot AND the Everly Brothers!!

  16. Anthony’s avatar

    Nice work – the six degrees of separation.

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