Empire of Dirt, exciting new wines from the Yarra

Sauvignon and a Cabernet from Australia’s Yarra Valley? Normally, I’d be sceptical, but when it’s a collaboration between Timo Meyer and his son Rivar, and Ben Henshaw of Indigo Wine, things get interesting.

Empire of Dirt Cabernet Sauvignon 2019 Yarra Valley, Australia
13% alcohol. This is a collaboration between Indigo Wine and Rivar Ferguson Mayer, who’s the son of well-known Yarra winegrower Timo Mayer. Five hogsheads made. This is bright and primary with juicy, spicy blackcurrant fruit with a zesty orange-peel edge, and a rounded, creamy character. Lively and bright, this is a vibrant expression of cool-climate Cabernet, with a bit of spicy warmth hiding under the fruit. A beautiful, expressive, and ultimately pretty smashable young wine. 92/100

Empire of Dirt Sauvignon Blanc 2019 Yarra Valley, Australia
12.5% alcohol. Six hogsheads made. This is so fresh, precise and full flavoured. Tight lemons, grapefruit and some fine spices. There’s an innate brightness to this wine, with lovely depth at the same time. This has a real crystalline quality to it. Long and mineral with a supple brightness. Serious, grown-up Sauvignon Blanc with some potential for development, but it’s delicious now. 93/100

UK retail for these wines will be around £19

Find these wines with wine-searcher.com