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Strawberry blonde gris Pinot marmalade


Whitey’s been chillin’ with friendly greys from round Mornington.

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Something about the sorts of mates I chose early ends me up with a few survivors who seem suddenly to have lasted so long largely to make fabulous marmalade while we share incredible ideas and sharpen the pitchforks for our storming of the Twilight Farm.  Kumquat is the go with my field marshals: Tony Bilson (made with vanilla) and Ieva Kains (with Cointreau).


Now I’m adding Paul Scorpo, for making one you can drink. Two, actually: a blonde and a ruby/garnet one, both from the grey/gris/grigio Pinot. Way down on Mornington on a rise of deep quick-rinsing volcania halfway between Port Phillip and Western Port.

Both wines come from the one block. Same fruit.

He starts blonde with a hint of ginger in the Scorpo Estate Grown Merricks North Mornington Peninsula Pinot Gris 2017 ($35; 13.4% alcohol; screw cap), where the ginger smells like it’s chopped and dried and slightly toasted. It steps from soaking with creamy pulped limes quite confident onto the palate, smiles for the snappers and waits that perfect pause before deciding that’ll do and leaves us with a long husky sigh as tannic as a really good Viognier. A lick of limoncello. Here we are blinking in the little stars the diamonds left after the paparazzi all popped. Goodness me. Snapper, pink, crunchy on the outside, with pickled horseradish and a soy as old as Tetsuya please.

Next: Pick the Pinot ripe, take 80 per cent of the stalks away and leave the berries in a big open fermenter in a controlled cold soak while those wild southern yeasts perch round the rim like vultures. Tease ’em for days, till you hand the temperature remote to the Devil. Once he’s cranked it the grey skins somehow let pinks loose in the must and you’ve got a Scorpo Bestia Pinot Grigio Tradizionale 2016 ($45; 13.5% alcohol; screw cap) happening.

Same grape, same vineyard as the abovementioned but the burnished pulp fiction strawberry marmalade one in the Ferrari-scarlet satin … first ever bone-dry drinking marmalade I’ve encountered that brought to mind Sophia Loren after she’s spent a few days eating mortadella in the New York airport lounge in, well, La Mortadella … it’s getting darker …

Something about that extra human Mediterranean twang seems to set this brute keening for saffron and the caramel of roast crustacean shell: I’m sure Marseille would forgive you if you smuggled it in into a bouillabaisse temple. Tell ’em it’s special marmalade for seafood. Just don’t try to convince ’em you’re Sophia Loren. She’s outside, revvin’ the Enzo.

These are real good wines, thank you Paul. They light me up.

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