Wine Wednesday. My favourite day of the week is here again. Have you got your glass ready? White, red, sparkling, whatever floats your boat. I sure do. This week I’m taking a one I stumbled across by chance. One day driving home from visiting my family in the country I decided to have an adventure. The first part of this adventure was stopping of n a national park in a place called Alligator Gorge. I wandered about in the gorge, which was particularly green and wet at the time of year which was late winter. It was a morning of beautiful solitude. I continued on to the second half of my adventure, solo wine tasting in the Clare Valley. Stopping at an adorable little bakery for lunch (and amazing thai chicken pie, if you are at all interested) I also discovered they had a cellar door. Their cellar door served a purpose of stocking wines from smaller wineries in the area that did not have their own cellar door. They had their own set of rules though: the wineries had to be family owned and run, owners who are involved in the winemaking process. I fell in love with a bottle of 2012 Volunteer Cabernet Sauvignon from Bundaleer Wines. I know, just for something different, another Cab Sav. Bundaleer Wines is located in the Southern Flinders Ranges in South Australia, well in the bush you might say. This particular wine is named for volunteers that helped fight a bushfire raging in the vicinity in January 2013. The volunteers helped fight the fire threatening their vineyard and in thanks named this wine in honour of their hardwork.
The book I have chosen to pair with this incredibly smooth and drinkable red has many parallels with the story of the wine itself. The Dressmaker by Rosalie Ham is a hilarious and touching story of Tilly Dunnage, who returns to the small town she was exiled from as a child to look after her crazy mother. Both this story and the wine are set in rural Australia. Bush life is beautiful and harsh and there are plenty of interesting characters to be found. In fact you will find more than enough within the pages of the Dressmaker. Another parallel that is defining in both the winery and the book is the threat of fires. Two immense fires have burned in both of these. Luckily for my sake, the vineyard was saved and I have this delicious wine to drink and as for the fate of Dungatar in the Dressmaker, well I’ll let you find that out for yourself when you read the book. Plus this wine is super smooth for a Cab Sav, much in the same way Kate Winslet was playing the role of Tilly in the movie.
I do have to admit that this is a rare circumstance where the movie lives up to the expectations of the book, so definitely give it a watch, however, do make sure you read this novel. It is enchanting, heart breaking and hysterically funny. This book is best read after a nice road trip up to Melrose in the Souther Flinders Ranges, head to the North Star Hotel which is a cellar door for Bundaleer Wines, taste their range. Buy your favourite (guaranteed to be this Cab Sav or their Sparking Shiraz) and read this book with a glass of wine in hand while immersed in the magic of the Australian bush.