When JMP and I were in Australia five years ago, we had a good time sampling Australian wines. One stood out above the rest, though. While out for dinner at a little restaurant in Airlie Beach, we were intrigued to find a blend of Shiraz and Viognier on the menu. We found this peculiar because shiraz is a red wine grape, but viognier is a white wine grape. (It turns out that this blend is not actually that peculiar, but is in fact traditional among some Rhone Valley wines.) We ordered the bottle that we saw, and we were stunned at how tasty it was. It was the single most memorable wine we have ever tasted at a restaurant.
We remember everything about that meal. The location, the date, what I ordered (grilled lamb over couscous), what JMP ordered (scallops with roe in a cream sauce). We just can’t remember who produced that wine. We of course were afraid that we’d forget so we wrote it down, but among all of our paper from that trip we managed to lose the slip of paper on which we’d written it.
So on this trip our mission is to find that wine. Unfortunately, shiraz viognier blends are a bit of a fad right now. As good detectives, we have some leads, though.
- We were poor grad students when we were here last, so we know that we couldn’t have ordered a wine that cost more than $50 at a restaurant (even on our honeymoon). So figure it’s probably no more than $35 retail, and probably less.
- We’ve tried the Yalumba and D’Arenberg shiraz viogniers in the U.S., and we know it’s not one of those.
- We have a hunch that it was not a South Australian wine, which if true would narrow things down considerably.
Our mission has the nice side effect of requiring us to taste lots of tasty wines, so watch this space for our findings.