Vermouth is having quite a renaissance at the moment. Gone are the days of the sad bottle of half finished dry vermouth lingering in the spirit cabinet. A relic of the brief enthusiasm for martinis after the last James Bond movie came out. Vermouth is back in the mainstream and it is better than ever. Of course Australian producers are giving the style their own interpretation as well.
Unico Zelo are wonderful winemakers based in the Adelaide Hills, they also have a distillery called Applewood. So it comes as no great surprise that they have made a series of vermouths that sit perfectly in the space between wine and spirits.
For the past few years they have produced a sweet vermouth utilising the citrus fruit Yuzu. This has been a raging success, so much so they have extended their range.
Pomelo is the largest of all the citrus fruits, it looks more like a melon. It has similar qualities to a grapefruit but not quite as intense. Unico Zelo have used it to flavour their dry vermouth. The base for this vermouth is made from Adelaide Hills Sauvignon Blanc.
The Rosa vermouth has a stunning blush of burnt orange colour and fragrance that leaps out of the glass. Made from Adelaide Hills Pinot Gris and Riverland Grenache, this rosé uses Davidson Plums and Strawberry Gum as aromatics to make a truly Australian version.
Each of these vermouths can be used in cocktails but they are entirely engaging all on their own. So pour a little over ice to sip or turn them into a refreshing highball with a little soda water.
- Chris, Albury