Innocent Bystander is located in the beautiful Yarra Valley, an hour north of Melbourne. The Yarra is one of Australia’s cool-climate regions hence a lot of good Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. The delicious IB Pinot often hits the Vintages shelves ($25), as does the winery’s high end line called Giant Steps ($40). The homage to Coltrane is in keeping with the innovative, jazzy mood at the winery.
Currently you can get a taste of Innocent at your local LCBO in the form of a Sparkling Moscato Rosé (#275727 $18.95) The big show of musky/exotic flavours are accompanied by sweetness and tartness – so the wine feels soothing and refreshing. A lovely tease. At 5% alcohol it’s the perfect anytime drink. But the pale pink colour and fizz suggest the summer patio season. Hard to imagine a better wedding reception sipper.
Other Yarra wines at the LCBO are the earthy, Italian-style De Bortoli Pinot Noir ‘Vat 10’ (61622 $14.95). At the winery I tasted amazingly elegant Estate Chardonnay and Syrah wines – all reasonably priced. The Italian way. Here’s a pic of the lovely Sarah Fagan, winemaker extraordinaire of De Bortoli.
In whites, Yering Station 08 ‘Little Yering’ Chardonnay (145318 $14.95) is also earthy and European in style.
NEXT: The beach, the beaches…