I’ve tasted a couple of Louee wines in the past (a 2010 Riesling and a Pinot Grigio from the same year) and neither floated my boat, as interesting as are some aspects of the Nullo Mountain vineyard. I gather I’m in the minority in not clicking with these wines, so it’s all no doubt a matter of taste. At the very least, the vineyard’s extremely high altitude should present a singular view of the Mudgee region, in which it is located.
On first sniff, I was a bit disappointed, as the wine initially communicates a worked character of the sort that, to my mind, better suits warmer climate fruit. It’s an altogether more interesting wine than this first impression suggests, though. What I at first thought was simply a whack of oak is in fact, I think, a mixture of some oak combined with fairly extensive handling, certainly some lees stirring and perhaps malolactic fermentation too. Which is to say, there’s a range of non-fruit aromas in addition to a core of white peach and melon. Some good complexity, then, even if the whole comes together with a hazy sense of definition, never snapping into focus or offering its aromas in an especially structured manner.
The palate shows some decent acid that helps to give the wine’s pastel flavours some zing and freshness. The entry, in particular, is a very exciting mix of sizzle, rounded fruit flavours and slightly challenging savouriness. The middle palate is more harmonious and becomes more defined, clean citrus fruit taking centre stage and pushing the oak and caramel flavours to one side. They creep back in though the after palate, especially the caramel, which is enlivened by a sense of saltiness that is very adult. The finish is decent and slightly herbal.
Overall, the effect is a bit cacophonous, flavours darting this way and that, lacking the ultimate poise that might elevate this wine further. But I like its character and structure, and the fact that it offers something really different in a local context. Good price too.