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A living legend and bespoke savant of the Australian wine industry, Geoff Merrill began his career in 1973 at Seppelt & Son, before completing tours of duty at Thomas Hardy and Chateau Reynella. Geoff acquired the historic Reynella wineworks in 1985 and has continued to craft many of McLaren Vale's most memorable vintages ever since. Mr Merrill has claimed countless industry accolades and many of our nation's most prestigious awards, including the hotly contested VISY Great Shiraz Challenge and the illustrious Jimmy Watson Trophy. Merrill offers a range of artisanal, limited release wines, of timely age, extravagant oak and sound value... The advanced age & luxury oak of mclaren vale's quiet achiever»
Starvedog Lane
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Starvedog Lane
Unlike many wineries, the history of Starvedog Lane isn’t linked to some long dead legendary winemaker who was the son of someone rich or famous

There are no tales of bravery and courage, and no triumph of the pioneering human spirit. Of suffering and loss, but ultimate victory in the face of adversity all in the interest of bringing you a great drop of wine. Nope. Just a name that comes from some old story about a hungry dog and some German settlers and a bunch of winemakers who are pretty fanatical about what they do. So what Starvedog Lane lack in a colourful and eventful history, they more than make up for with some sensational wines. And at the end of the day, that’s what it’s all about, right?

Starvedog Lane

As winemakers, it goes without saying grapes are pretty important. Starvedog Lane's come from a little place called the Adelaide Hills region. It’s called that because it’s near Adelaide. And there are plenty of hills. So while it’s not the most imaginatively named region, it has become highly regarded as one of Australia’s best cool climate grape growing regions.

The region itself stretches from Clarendon to McLaren Vale, up to Eden Valley and the start of the Barossa district so there’s a fair bit of it. More than enough, in fact, to give all the wonderful grapes needed to make equally wonderful wines. Some people get a bit nervous when you use a phrase like ‘fresh cut grass’ to describe the flavour of a wine. Unless you’re a cow, terms like this are hardly likely to get your tail wagging. But honestly, don’t let it put you off or else you’ll be missing out on a real treat. If you’ve got something to celebrate, Starvedog Lane is the puppy to do it with. If you haven’t got anything to celebrate, don’t worry, when you’ve got one of these handy you can always celebrate having a damn fine wine to drink.

Starvedog Lane uses many grape types, but it’s certainly no mongrel – quite the opposite in fact. It’s the combination of styles that gives Starvedog Lane it's characteristics, but plenty of the kind of flavour that makes a wine really good. Starvedog Lane goes sensationally well with anything, as aperitifs, with seafood, pasta dishes and the word ‘darling’.

Starvedog Lane

Chardonnay is what many people refer to as The King of white grapes and is one of the most popular white wines going around. If you want a white, and you’re not sure what to get, this is a pretty good way to go. Keep in mind it’s no lightweight though – as far as white go, it’s got more body than most. Unlike their No Oak Chardonnay this one’s gotten rather friendly with French oak so has that classic hint of spicy oak in it. It’s a fine wine with real character, and if you’re thinking of tucking into something like antipasto, scallops, creamy pasta, chicken or even a Thai laksa, this drop is definitely one to savour along with your meal.

Starvedog Lane also makes unwooded wine with the same style of grapes as their regular Chardonnay, but this one’s steered clear of the French connection. While it’s never snuggled up to any French oak, it’s in great company if there’s fish and chips or creamy pasta on the menu. It’s a little lighter than traditional Chardonnay and has plenty of spicy, fruity, flavour without being at all sweet. Paul, the winemaker behind this one, uses words like ‘zest’ and ‘racy’ when he talks about it and says it’s particularly good sitting on ice – we can only imagine he means the wine, not you.

The Starvedog Lane Pinot Grigio is a style of wine likely to be a lot less familiar with Australians. But don’t let the unusual name scare you. It’s easy to pronounce (say it like this: pee-no gree-jee-oh) and even easier to drink. It’s dry, it’s light and it’s definitely funky. If you want to impress your friends with something a little different, look no further. If you’re into fancy food, match it up with something like poached corn fed chicken breast encrusted with dukkah. But really, anything like salad, prawns and oysters would be lovely with this sexy little Italian pooch.

f you’ve already read about Starvedog Lane Shiraz, you’ll already know what that has in store. But the Starvedog Lane blend with Viognier is something quite unique. Not to mention quite delicious! Mixing a white grape like Viognier with a red might seem a little out of the ordinary, and that’s true because there’s nothing ordinary about this drop. It’s already picked up 4 bronze medals at wine shows and when you taste it, chances are it’ll leave you begging for more as well.

Starvedog Lane