Reliable, affordable quality from the Clare Valley

What's that old adage about "best laid plans"?

Recently, Taylors Wines from the Clare Valley in Australia were holding a zoom tasting for Kiwi scribes of their much loved Estate Series red wines, hosted by third-generation company director Justin Taylor and chief winemaker Adam Eggins.

I was looking forward to attending this as the wines have strong visibility here, are affordably priced and always offer reliably good bang for buck, while they were also showcasing their new (to the New Zealand market) tempranillo.

Sadly, my day turned completely to custard and I was unable to make the zoom. Thankfully, though, they had sent me samples of the wines, which I can report on below.

Space constraints mean I can’t fit in their 2020 merlot, but it was also a very tasty rendition worth seeking out for merlot fans.

Wine Saver Pro Wine Preserver

As part of the abovementioned Taylors zoom event, they had partnered with Wine Saver Pro. I admit to a degree of scepticism about many of the wine gadgets out there, with their promises of the vinous equivalents of turning a sow’s ear into a silk purse. However, the science behind Wine Saver Pro is pretty simple and already well tested so I was happy to give this a test run.

Once a bottle of wine is opened it will be exposed to air, which begins the natural process of oxidation (the same process that turns a cut apple on your kitchen bench brown). In wine the opened bottle will slowly lose its fruit characters, becoming more dull and lifeless over time, while cider or sherry-like notes can also develop.

Wine Saver Pro is a simple gas canister for home use. You squirt a burst of inert argon gas into the bottle, and being heavier than air this creates a layer on top of the wine, excluding oxygen. Tested over a week with the Taylors wines, I was impressed by the results and have used the canister several times since with similarly effective results.

Available online for $34.99.


2019 Taylors Wines Estate Limestone Coast/Clare Valley Shiraz


Price RRP $19.99
Rating Very good to excellent


Sweetly fruited nose,
chocolate, bramble,
berryfruit, clove &
nutmeg. Ripely fruited
palate yet with an
attractive savoury
contrast and charry
hints. Nicely judged
acidity gives this a
lively close, framed by
sweet berryfruit. They
make significant
volumes of this, but it
is always one  you can
rely on for good all-
round appeal.


2019 Taylors Wines Estate Clare Valley/Limestone Coast Cabernet Sauvignon 


Price RRP $19.99
Rating Excellent


Hints of toffee, leafy
undercurrents, darker
fruits, blackcurrant,
liqueur fruits and
tobacco. Nice richness
here with an appealing
suppleness that belies
the tannic backbone
that kicks in on the
close, giving a
refreshing sapidity.
Generously flavoured
with blackcurrant,
bramble and a dusty/
earthy quality fleshing
out nicely in the glass.


2020 Taylors Wines Estate McLaren Vale/Clare Valley Tempranillo


Price RRP $19.99
Rating Excellent


Sweetly fragrant, ripely
fruited nose with milk
chocolate and fruit
pastille notes. The
palate has an engaging
spiciness, backed by
the ripe fruit. Chocolate
and toasted coconut
appear with aeration.
Good balance and the
deceptively powerful
underlying tannins build
over time making this a
good food choice, or
just as nice by itself.

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