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JOHN ROZENTALS reflects on a famous father and son.

June 22, 2020 Beverage No Comments Email Email

I was lucky enough to meet Murray Tyrrell, aka the ‘Mouth of the Hunter’, before the great man died.

He was right in his element, up to his armpits in fermenting red wine, and spruiking “another great Hunter vintage”.

I only met his son, Bruce, in passing in the lounge of the Sydney InterContinental, where he was waiting for the NSW Wine Awards dinner, to be hosted by the effervescent Lyndey Milan and the hotel’s then gm, Wolfgang Grimm.

It was a Sunday afternoon, I think, and news of Princess Diana’s tragic death had just began to filter through on a traditionally slow news day.


Any hope I had of getting coverage for my first wine-related media release soon evaporated.

I eventually came to know Bruce much better than I had Murray, the relationship settled a few years ago over a private tasting in the Tyrrells Hunter Valley winery of the best of his dry whites.

I never came to know Murray well as I have Bruce, and while the latter lacks the former’s pizzazz I’m sure he has grown into a worthy champion of the area and of the family-owned operation he now heads.

I’m sure, too, that Bruce has plenty more cards up his sleeve still to play.


Tyrrells 2018 Hunter Valley Chardonnay ($25): This a typical medium-bodied Hunter chardonnay showing lovely citrus and stonefruit flavours, plus a touch of oak derived from maturation in French barriques. The palate has leesy complexity and the wine will suit most white-meat dishes, even those that are quite richly sauced.

Tyrrells 2018 Hunter Valley Shiraz ($25): A medium-bodied dry red with clarity, brightness and a mix of attractive red-berry flavours. The palate is fresh and shows good balance of spicy fruit and tannin. The wine is a good example of modern Hunter shiraz and will sit very comfortably next to a red-sauced pizza at the local bistro or at home.



Tyrrells 2018 Rufus Stone Heathecote Shiraz ($27): If you prefer shiraz on the fuller-flavoured side spend the extra couple of dollars on a bottle of this dry red from Tyrrells’ central-Victorian venture. It shows oodles of plummy and regional white-pepper characters. Ideally, try it with a good, rare, char-grilled steak, or a red-meat or mushroom-based dish of your choice.

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