On The Shelf – Some Young Punks Naked on Roller Skates

By The Gentleman

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This is a special entry from The Lady and I, we are finally getting around to talking about one of our favourite wineries, Some Young Punks. Some Young Punks are not only dishing out good looking and great tasting wines, but they are also a proud SA local winemaker.  They were pretty much the winery that introduced me to awesome label design, shaking up my view on an industry that I thought was characterised by traditional and plain labels.

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Some Young Punks was established in 2006. They are part of the new generation of young Australian winemakers who focus on small scale wine production that explores some interesting blends and styles of grape to bring something that mixes a little of the new with the old. The small scale nature makes the wines rather sought after, so make sure you snap up a bottle whenever you see it otherwise you might not be able to enjoy it another time. The Naked on Roller Skates is not the first bottle of Some Young Punks we’ve had, but it’s the bottle that happened to take our fancy at the moment. The wine is part of their Pulp Series of wines, which is inspired by the images associated with ‘low brow’ literature from the 20’s through to the 50’s. The images act as the sirens to draw people’s attention to the wines and help them stand out from the crowd. They certainly achieve that, catching the eye of The Lady and I. The Naked on Roller Skates is the perfect blend of cheekiness and class that the old pinup artist could capture so well. The image is bold and feisty and just looks gorgeous. It shows that sometimes low brow knows how to have a lot more fun than high brow and sometimes you just need to let your hair down and go with it.

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The wine itself is a blend of Shiraz (85%) and Mataro (15%) from McLaren Vale. It has a really deep purple colour to it and strong dark fruity flavours on the nose. The dark fruit flavours continue throughout the wine, you can really pick up deep red and black berry fruits like plum and cherry. The fruits didn’t make the wine too sweet though. I’ve probably had the bottle for about a year, on top of being a 2010 vintage, and the wine has really mellowed out. It’s got a very smooth texture and almost savoury sort of flavour to it. You also get slight hints of liquorice and a really pleasant lingering spiciness. We couldn’t quite put our finger on what, just a general nice spice, which provided a very pleasant aftertaste. The wine also wasn’t too heavy. As you can see The Lady and I indulged in some rather big glasses, but despite the bold, dense flavours the wine itself was not so intense that you felt like you needed to have a nap afterwards. This is something that is always a bonus when you’re trying to feel like a mature, adult human being who drinks wine.

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The wine inside definitely lives up to the label as it’s quite a bold, intense wine yet there’s that surprising smoothness to the finish. We really couldn’t get over the smoothness despite those big flavours. It’s definitely the sign of a high quality wine. Naked on Roller Skates may be the first Some Young Punks wine we have featured on the blog, but it certainly won’t be the last.

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On The Shelf- Rocland Estate’s Chocolate Box GSM

On a trip to Paris I was force fed red wine. The people I met and stayed with looked at me with complete confusion when I mentioned I’d never drunk red wine and they quickly remedied the situation. They informed me that it was something that you needed to keep at to develop an appreciation for the flavor and I’ve taken that advice and run with it, never turning down an opportunity to have a glass or two (or three) of red. While I enjoy a glass of red I have no idea what I’m doing when it comes to selecting wine, but luckily winemakers are some of the most adventurous and inspired when it comes to developing their labels. This bottle of Chocolate Box GSM is a prime example and while I couldn’t keep the bottle because it was a gift I purchased for someone else it will certainly be taking a place On The Shelf very soon.

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The Chocolate Box GSM is a blend of Grenache, Shiraz, and Mataro from the Barossa Valley and made by Rocland Estate who are based in Nurioopta, South Australia. The dominant flavors are chocolate and cherry with a bit of spice and vanilla. The maker states that it leaves a “persistent, lingering silky finish.” Normally I wouldn’t read much into a description like that but I was surprised to find the wine went down very smoothly and in fact did have a persistent aftertaste that left a really nice, silky taste in the mouth. Needless to say the bottle did not last very long.

The label is very nice. I’m a sucker for a pretty lady and the one on the GSM is gorgeous. She reminds me of the Elvgren girls of the 40’s and 50’s as she has that very classic look. She’s not in a revealing pose or anything, we actually only see her from the shoulders up, but she just has a nice smile and its a real classy image. I also appreciate that the image of the girl is also used on the seal near the top of the bottle. Its just a nice touch that you often don’t see. The color pattern and the font for the label are also very good. Chocolate Box is written clearly, in bold and really stands out due to its simplicity. The red also makes a bold statement.

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I have to say though, the people at Rocland Estate are a devious lot. Each bottle of the Chocolate Box range has a different girl on the label, which means that not only am I going to have to purchase another bottle of this delicious GSM but I’m also going to have to purchase the complete range of Chocolate Box wines so I have the whole set.

 

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