We have some pretty fine cellar doors here in South Australia but often, if you take the effort to phone smaller producers who only hold tastings by appointment, you will be rewarded by something really special.
A recent call to Domenic Torzi, an upstanding gentleman of good Calabrian-Abruzzese stock, resulted in a fantastic tasting in his small Angaston tasting room/garage in the Barossa – or, as he likes to call it, Angle Vale Heights.
Olives, olive oil and bottles of wine are displayed. A table heaves with freshly baked bread, salumi, peperoni arrosto and antipasti, and cotoletta sizzles away on a small burner in the corner.
In true Italian style, the wines are tasted with food; essentially they are an extra implement at the table. Savoury and characterful, they perfectly complement the food on offer and the conversation around the table. The Italians do the eating and drinking thing effortlessly.
The wines all have a savoury thread that flows through them with Italian varieties sitting comfortably alongside the more commonly found Riesling and Shiraz. There were many highlights among the wines I tried on my visit with Dom but a delicious white wine, a Trebbanio, struck a chord for its compatibility with food.
Harvested from 113-year-old Trebbiano vines in the sand-dunes of the Koonunga sub-region in the Northern Barossa, it is a beautifully textural wine. Citrusy, floral-flecked, nutty and just a delight to drink.
TORZI MATTHEWS 2016 Vigna Cantina Trebbiano