Wine Code Breaker #364

2019 Shadowfax Mondeuse Noir, Port Phillip, Victoria 

Mt Blanc in France is the highest mountain in the Alps of Europe.  In its shadows is the Savoie wine region of France.  This is the home to the Mondeuse Noir (or Noire) grape that the Gaul’s claimed “ripens amongst the snow.”  Then there is Werribee, located within the Port Phillip wine region it has one of Australia’s largest plantings of Mondeuse.  It has been in Australia for over 100 years but you wouldn’t really have known. It has been seen more as a blending variety elevating the acid and colour.  More recently, this grape is being showcased on its own to highlight its rustic and acid driven characteristics.  

The 2019 Shadowfax Mondeuse Noir from the Port Phillip region in Victoria is a bright ruby purple coloured wine.  The nose is instantly herbal followed by blackberries, spices, black olives as the savoury element and orange zest giving it a real appeal.  The palate has the dark fruits and black olives coming through mingling with a somewhat sappy crunchiness to the tannins.  The acidity brings it into balance and is better with a rustic plate of charcuterie and breads. This is not a wine for all, but is one of interest and worth trying. 


Rating: 90 pts

Closure: Screwtop

Alc: 13%

Drink: Now; 3-7yrs

Price: $34

Tasted: March 2021

2 thoughts on “Wine Code Breaker #364

  1. James

    When I think of Savoie I think of Marian and my time living France at Grenoble at the foot of the French Alps and under the shadow of Mont (French version!) Blanc, fairly basic, but enjoyable white wine, which is now starting to gain some acclaim. But never seen anything described as Mondeuse Noir. When I think of Mondeuse red wine I think of some pretty good and interesting Brown Brothers Shiraz Mondeuse and Cabernet from many years ago, the last hand written tasting notes i found were for the 1972, tasted July 1978! I assume we are talking about the same grape variety, but not absolutely sure! This vintage had lots of tannin and was slightly hard on the finish. But others were very good.

    When I think of Werribee, I think of Melbourne’s largest sewerage farm and unfortunately its lingering odours, not a romantic Port Phillip marketing ploy…..has Port Phillip been declared a GI yet?


    PS just reading a book on Len Evans I picked up at an oddments shop in Bushy Park out towards the end of the Derwent Valley, the main winery being Meadowbank (50 odd Hectares). The book is quite good, by Jeez he got through a power of good Australian and French wine in his time.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It never ceases to amaze me the depth of your knowledge and notes. Agree about Werribee, particularly as I wrote a Masters on sewage sludge! Anyway, back to Port Phillip, I chose to go with the bottle. It is the greater zone that includes Geelong, Sunbury, Macedon Ranges, Yarra Valley and Mornington Peninsula. As for Len Evans, I have a very small tome of his and it is a fantastic read. In summary, if you like wine, spend accordingly. And, as the grand father of the Australian wine industry he knew his stuff!


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