Ben says

★★ Great Wine Purplish dark hue with lots of legs streaking down the glass. Pure ripe aromas of blackberries, almost like purée, over cracked black pepper and vanilla spice. Warming alcohol combines with sweet leather tannins on the palate. Thick, spicy and bold packed dense with crushed fruit and cranberry-like acidity. Smooth and creamy with vanilla hints on the finish. A wine that makes you want to seek out more from winemaker Elena Brooks.

Guerrieri Rizzardi '3 Cru' Amarone della Valpolicella Red Wine


92% Syrah and 8% Riesling with 14.0% abv. Whole bunch fermented with stalks on in open top fermenters and on top of Riesling skins for eleven days, hand plunged twice a day. The wine is then basket pressed into mainly old French oak barriques (although some new wood is also used) to finish fermentation. The wine then matures for 18 months and is bottled unfiltered and unfined. The Shiraz is from the Pieri family vineyard.

Grown in: McLaren Vale, AUSTRALIA

Food Pairing

The Riesling in this wine is a master stroke, lifting a full dense red into the realms of versatility and freshness. The fruit and savoury pepper notes means it could marry handsomely with black olives in a ragu and wholewheat pasta, while the deep jammy and rich body make it a mouth-watering partner with braised steak stews and dumplings. For my money, this is a fantastic pairing with moussaka, pairing with the aubergine and cheese – making for a moreish match.

Disclosure & Price

Purchased from Reserve Wines during their 15% off deal. Find in the UK for circa £17.50 at Reserve Wines.

Reviewed and tasted: 24/12/2023

Ben Franks Wine Tasting Note Producer Profile

About the Producer

Dandelion Vineyards was founded by the winemaker Elena Brooks, originally from Bulgaria where her mother worked in a winery. She met her husband and settled in the McLaren Vale, making wines that have met critical acclaim, including the Dandelion Vineyards Lion’s Tooth of McLaren Vale, which won her the Bushing Queen crown at the McLaren Vale wine show in 2021. Brooks prefers to work with older vineyards and she has an appreciation for the terroir and the environment. Brooks is a member of Sustainable Winegrowing Australia and is working towards the certification.