2018 Cabernet MerlotRegular price $40.00 Save $0.00
80% Cabernet Sauvignon 15% Merlot 5% Petit Verdot
Production: 4487 bottles 50 Magnums (natural cork closure)
Select parcels of grapes from the famous Wilyabrup and Walcliffe sub-regions are brought together in this classic Bordeaux blend. Elegance and delicacy combined with great complexity and length result in a real wine of substance.
The Cabernet portion of this wine came from five select vineyard sites. Three of these lie in the real ‘Dress Circle’ of Margaret River viticulture in the heart of the Wilyabrup sub-region. This area of Margaret River has shown year after year that it can deliver consistently incredible fruit quality and the finest of our fine wines are produced from fruit grown here. The other two Cabernet vineyard blocks are located in the Walcliffe sub-region of Margaret River, with a strong northerly exposure and around 4km from the Indian Ocean overlooking the coastal end of the Margaret River itself. Perched high on this hillside, the vines grow in gravelly, well drained soil and experience fantastic exposure to the warm summer sunshine and regular, cooling sea breezes.
The Merlot portion of the blend is from a very special old vineyard. One of the oldest and most historic in the entire Margaret River district, this Wilyabrup site displays all of the most sought after vineyard characteristics. Of particular note is that the vines are old – around 46 years old and un-irrigated, which leads to production of a Merlot wine with amazing depth and complexity.
The Petit Verdot for the blend comes from 23 year old vines growing on a gentle north sloping vineyard also in the Wilyabrup subregion of Margaret River. The soil is very gravelly and the vines work hard, focusing their energies on ripening healthy, vibrant fruit, not excesses of vegetative growth or high quantities.
The 2017/18 growing season was a real classic ‘Margaret River’ summer. We had plenty of warm, sunny days, never getting too hot, with characteristically cool, fresh evenings. This lead to a long and slow maturation of the grapes which provides them with the greatest opportunity to develop a wider diversity of flavour and aroma compounds. A lack of summer rainfall meant the grapes were in pristine condition and some of the healthiest that I have ever witnessed.
All of the grapes for this wine were handpicked into small 8kg crates and immediately transported back to the winery where they were gently de-stemmed and not crushed, directly into their small fermentation vessels. This allowed the ferment to start with what were almost totally unburst, undamaged individual berries. The wines were fermented in their separate batches utilising indigenous yeasts unique to each vineyard site.
The must underwent a slow, steady ferment with gentle hand plunging twice each day. The individual batches spent 14-22 days on skins after which the fruit was basket pressed into French oak barriques, with a small portion (19%) being new, and was left to complete malolactic fermentation in barrel utilising the activity of indigenous bacteria. The wine was left to mature for 21 months in barrel during which time it was racked via gravity one time and topped regularly.
One day before bottling the wine was racked out of barrel to tank and was then bottled unfined and unfiltered.
This is a classic Margaret River Cabernet Merlot speaking clearly of it's strong connection with the famed Bordeaux wines of France which were the original inspiration for planting vines in our region. Full bodied but not heavy, rich and powerful but not overbearing, amazing complexity with a vast array of flavours but with wonderful balance, poise and softness, it is a Cabernet for all palates. Whilst it is still in the midst of youthful exuberance the wine is still wonderful to drink now. However, time in the cellar will only be of benefit. This wine has the balance and structure to allow for cellaring for 25+ years.