Signature Wines Cellar Door played host to the launch of Norwood, Payneham and St Peters’ hottest new attraction on Thursday 9th February: the Eastside Wine and Ale Trail.
Comprised of three cellar doors and one microbrewery, the trail weaves its way through the tucked-away side streets of Norwood, Stepney and Felixstow.
We were greeted in the hot afternoon sun by a buzzing atmosphere at Signature Wines; the warehouse—converted for the event and complete with industrial-size fans, bar stools and barrels as well as a DJ—provided the perfect setting despite the heat.
With a welcoming word from the Honourable Robert Bria, Mayor of the city of Norwood Payneham and St Peters, we were off to the four stalls with tasting glasses eagerly in hand.
The tapas-style food was also a hit throughout, with a smorgasbord of canapes making their way through the soiree, both vegetarian and otherwise, including skewers, spoonfuls and all things dainty.
The three represented wineries all showcased a selection of award-winning whites, reds and a sparkling here and there.
Amadio was first cab off the rank for us, and we opted for a light, easy start: the Pinot Grigio.
With its easy, fruity flavours it certainly provided a refreshing sense of relief from the heat – a great stepping stone for those who don’t typically indulge in the fruit of the vine.
We then moved onto Amadio’s Sauvignon Blanc, a drier, crisp, less sweet drop than the Grigio – less playful on the palate but a versatile wine that would complement just about any type of seafood.
Not to be outdone were Tidswell Wines with their Sauv Blanc, which dropped almost all pretence of sweetness, opting to hit the palate with a sizzle and what could just about be described as a hint of pineapple-esque sourness.
Lastly on the list of whites, Signature Wines’ Sauv Blanc was an extremely interesting blend of sweetness and full-bodied, complicated tastes; for an untrained palate—like the one that belongs to yours truly—it was quite a shock to the system, but the more we gave this wine a chance, the more it impressed us.
Despite being dominated and saturated by the selection of fabulous wines on offer, Little Bang Brewing Co made a big statement with their two beers: the Sleazy American Wheat Ale and the 50 Dalrymples American IPA.
The Sleazy American, a refreshing, yellow, summery drop and collaboration between Little Bang and Left Barrel Brewing, was initially a one-time brew, but with nothing but love from drinkers, it’s come into something of a regular rotation at the boys’ cellar door in Stepney.
Back into wine mode we went, though, as we found one of the most intriguing reds we’ve ever dared try.
Back at Tidswell Wines, we had a chat to the lovely owners, Ben and Andrea; Ben recommended the award-winning ‘Jennifer’ Cabernet Sauvignon and, despite not typically being big Cab Sav fans, we acquiesced and happened upon the absolute highlight of the evening.
With a strong oaky flavour and unusually soft tannins for a Cab Sav, this fantastically fruity, yet not too sweet, drop left us wanting glass after glass.
Such an inspiring, wonderful wine was a perfect finale to a fun, fruitful (sorry) launch for the Eastside Wine and Ale Trail – a collaborative enterprise we wish the best of success!