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Your comments on wine regions
August 23, 2007

Spring 07 Newsletter

(Yes I know I'm early)

In This Issue

You can comment on Vinodiversity pages

New wine club offer

Ins and outs of James Halliday's Wine Companion 2008

Map of the Rhone Valley Wine Region

Wine events


Now you can tell me what you think.

Sending out a newsletter is often a one way process; you get to know what I think, but I can only guess what is happening out there. However some people do send feedback by just pressing the reply button this email. Try it if you have something nice, or useful to say.

But we can go much better than that. I've just bought in a new feature where Vinodiversity readers can add their stories specific pages. For example you might like to share an experience you had in touring your favourite wine region. Did you find a wonderful B&B to stay in? Were you given extra friendly service at a cellar door? What about the restaurant with all of the local wines on the wine list? Every one has some secret or insider's tips to share. Let us know about yours.

Sharing your story is quite easy. Just go to and follow the simple instructions. It will only take you a minute or two to share your experience. I edit all submissions, that way the topic stays on Pinot grigio rather than p*n*s enl*rgers and Viognier rather than v*agr*. So say something nice. My mother's advice was "If you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all."


New wine club without steak knives

I like being in wine clubs and on mailing lists, both electronic and paper. I have been looking around for a while to either set up a club especially for Vinodiversity or to make some recommendations. It's one thing getting people to read all about Marsanne and Tempranillo, and another to give them a chance to try them. Many wineries with clubs have only a few varieties, but people trying a new variety may want to buy just one or two bottles. But I think I have found a wine club that fits the bill. It has about 15 varietals on offer. It has free, or very reasonable freight to Australian addresses. The wines are very good, some are at the top of their class. The prices are very reasonable, and club members get a 10% discount. (that's on top of free delivery to most States).

So what is this club? If you join via my link I get a small bonus from the club, so I'll send you a small gift, not a set of steak knives, but something special. Find out more via


With the release of Halliday's Wine Companion 2008 I have undertaken a major update of many of the pages on the Vinodiversity site, especially some of the regional pages. I have also added the readers advice feature, so you can see what other Vinodiversity readers have said about the region, its wines and facilities, or maybe add your own special tip or snippet of advice.

The new edition of James Halliday's Australian Wine Companion is now available. Each year there are new features and innovations. It just keeps getting bigger, even though 665 wineries from last year's edition have been deleted. Standout wines and wineries are highlighted in red. The wealth of information about each of the wineries is retained. The Companion is better value for money than ever.

If you haven't got your copy yet why not consider buying it online? you can get it a discount to the retail price and sent for reasonable postage. (the second copy you need as a gift, or James Halliday's Wine Atlas that you buy on the same order is freight free!) See for details. Ordering online is also a good idea for our overseas friends, local bookshops may not stock it for some time.

I've compiled a list of the "new" wineries, and the varieties they are using. Just under half of the "new" wineries are using new varieties. See a summary of the new wineries at


We all hear plenty about Burgundy and Bordeaux, but in many ways the Rhone is more relevant for Australians. Think Shiraz (which the French like to misspell as Syrah) Viognier, Grenache, Mourvedre, Marsanne, Roussanne...the list goes on. My friend Steve De Long has just added a downloadable Rhone map on his site see


I attend the monthly Victorian Wine Regions Showcase. This is an excellent event, each month a different region is featured. On 5 and 6 September wineries from the Upper Goulburn, Strathbogie Ranges, Goulburn Valley and Nagambie Lakes are on show. In October the NE Victorian regions have their turn. Both are wonderful areas full of varietal diversity. You can get more information, and download a discounted tasting ticket at

Why not drop by for a chat at my stall. You can buy a copy of my book, or the Wine Grape Varietal Table. If you're not from Melbourne I have set up a small wine events site at


Do you have a friend who should be reading this? Just forward it on to them or refer them to

In the next newsletter I will tell you about a wine bottle that has been used 150 times!

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