Lucy and Alysha are based in West Gippsland, looking after small parcels of land and sourcing fruit from around Victoria. Producing delicious and honest wines under their label ‘Allevare’, meaning ‘to nurture’, they pride themselves on working with the land and collaborating with growers in all regions with a focus on sustainability and innovation. An amalgam of Sicilian and local sensibilities, and some of the most joyful and inviting labels in the game.
Allevare Nero d’Avola rosé 2023$ 31.00 incl. GST
Whole bunch pressed, 50% barrel fermented in large format old French oak on full lees. Aged for 6 months in the cellar and bottled on Gunaikurnai Land. Full, denseand structured on the pallet with complex aromas of grapefruit, pomegranate androse petal. Textural and fresh with a mineral mid-pallet.
“Watermelon, guava, red apple skins, cranberries, strawberry tart. It’s pretty intensely fruity and sweet-edged in flavours, making it a cheerful drink and I would say quite appropriate to have with spicy food. Although, it gives a lick of bitter pink grapefruit phenolics at the very finish which is a nice balance. Texture and concentration of flavour are in place too.” 90 points, Kasia Sobiesiak, Winefront
Allevare McLaren Vale Mataro 2022$ 34.00 incl. GST
Stepping outside of Victoria for this one, and what a pretty and fine iteration of Mataro here, Lucy introduced to a fantastic grower of organic Mataro by former colleague Nick from Stoke Wines. The wine sees 2 weeks on skins and twice-daily pump overs, before pressing to old French oak barrels for 10 months before bottling.
Conceived as a fruit forward, juicy and not overly tannic wine, this is so fresh, slurpy and lively – smoked charcuterie/smallgoods lead the nose, with a lovely fruit spectrum of black plums, blackberry, cherries and a shake of Chinese five-spice. Focused and beautifully textured, fun and flowing, definitely the guzzler of the range.
Allevare Grenache 2023$ 34.00 incl. GST
Allevare’s Novello style red is back and better than ever. Following on from the incredibly popular Cab Franc, Lysh and Lucy managed to source some of the best grown Grenache in Victoria. 10 days on skins, tank aged for 6 months and bottled on Gunaikurnai Land. Bright fruit, perfumed with a five-spice element, perfect chilled or room temperature.
Allevare Metcalfe Shiraz 2021$ 38.00 incl. GST
Grown by Tim Sproal of Minim Wines. Three separate wild ferments including 30% whole bunch, and a small portion given two weeks’ carbonic maceration, a heap of fun here. Loads of flavour sans weight at 12.8% alcohol, bright and fantastically aromatically expressive, with a huge spectrum of bay leaf, thyme and rosemary around forest berries. If anybody wonders what cool climate Victorian shiraz is meant to taste like, this is your ambassador.
Allevare Gippsland Sauvignon Blanc 2021$ 41.00 incl. GST
The most experimental winemaking methodology in the stable here – oak fermented, with 18 months ageing in seasoned oak (a small portion kept in stainless), one of the barrels left untopped and a tiny portion given extended skin contact.
It couldn’t be anything other than Sauvignon Blanc, but it’s a grown-up and characterful take for sure. Nettle and grass flavours around grapefruit (fruit, rind and pith) and even an orange fruit element. Great driving texture, thought-provoking, and begging for some creative food matching.
Allevare Yarra Valley Chardonnay 2022$ 41.00 incl. GST
Grown in Coombe Farm’s Coldsteam vineyard. 15% new oak, barrel fermented, a taut and fine style belying full malolactic fermentation. Linear but with plenty of stuffing, stone fruits, yellow grapefruit, white flowers, struck match and flint shine through this contemporary take on Chardonnay.
Allevare Beechworth Roussanne 2022$ 44.00 incl. GST
Grown on the Warner vineyard (once a key supplier to Giaconda), and soon to be a collector’s item as following vintage 2022 all the Roussanne was grafted over to Gamay. A shame, given the character of this wine. Oak fermented and matured for six months, it somehow manages to be racy and textural; yellow fruits and peach skin over saline and honeyed elements. Refreshing without being bracing, it makes a strong case to see more of this variety vinified without blending.
Artwork by Bridgette McNab, an old Sicilian love story about Teste di Moro. The story of a Moorish soldier falling in love with a woman from Palermo, they were madly in love until she learned that he had another family back home. She cut off his head in a fit of rage, planted her basil in it and left it on her balcony for the town to see. She had the most fertile basil in all of Palermo and the rest of the town soon started to sculpt ceramic heads in the hope that their basil would be just as good.
“Undoubtedly, there’s that textural smell of wine getting hot in the wood. Nutty with apricot kernels, pastry, ripe lemons, beeswax element. Texture is smooth, lightly creamy, with sprinkle of salt on ripe fruit and then savoury finish, just lightly powdery and with judicious spice. Very appetising.” 92 points, Kasia Sobiesiak, Winefront
Allevare Gippsland Red Fiend Blend 2022$ 48.00 incl. GST
From the alluvial soils of Xavier Goodridge’s Maffra vineyard. A genuine co-fermented field blend, 70% Cabernet Sauvignon and 30% Shiraz. Gently worked with rack and returns to polymerise tannins (Bordeaux vibes) and build mid palate, and raised in two seasoned French puncheons.
A tasty, savoury claret-style with some fine tannic and earthy grit. Floral and aromatic, almost Pinot weighted, it’s dusty and musky with a spectrum of plummy fruits, graphite, red bell pepper and cherry and a light-medium bodied structure, a finer, more detailed and more Euro expression than the common paradigm of Ozzie Cab Shiraz.
A fun PS – one row of the vineyard was struck by lightning, though it was far enough from fruit-set that there was no adverse effect to the grapes. Electrically charged wine, literally.
Allevare Gippsland Chardonnay 2022$ 58.00 incl. GST
From 40 year old vines on Xavier Goodridge’s Maffra site, barrel fermented and raised entirely in seasoned oak, with full malo. Richer and with flesh, though this feels more derived of site rather than winemaking influence (oak/bâtonnage), reminiscent in many ways of Mâcon. Attractively textured, a broad spectrum of fruit flavours here of grilled peach, melon, waxy apple, nectarine and cashew. A leesy mealiness rounds out the finish, a sophistication here.