(2017) What an absolute treat to open this 11-year-old Cabernet from Margaret River, and the family estate of Leeuwin. Under screwcap it is in perfect condition, showing a plum and sweet gamey character, notes of tobacco and herbal, gentle leafiness along with graphite adding complexity and precision. Clearly the product of a cool year, that leafy character is overpowered on the palate by the concentration of blackcurrant fruit, very pure and again precise, with really firm, tart, plum and cherry skin biting tannin and acid to tension the whole picture. Drinking beautifully. Note the price and stockist given is for the current vintage at time of writing.
(2017) Lovely wine, with a delicate creamy oak vanilla and has really charming fruit, masses of creamy cherry and bright raspberry, then a firm dark liquorice core. The endive bittersweetness of the acid and tannin core giving lovely length. UK stockist and price quoted at time of review is for the 2012 vintage.
(2017) A nice ripeness here, a lightly smoky overlay to juicy peach fruit and ripe red apple. There’s a touch of sweetness here, and a more dilute palate than the Tamar Ridge for example, but a balanced and tasty.
(2017) d'Arenberg is the largest biodynamic grower in Australia. From a nearly extinct clone, a parent of the Reynella clone. Very low yields. Foot-trodden. Very fragrant with a touch of leafiness and really tight, fresh black fruit, lovely tobacco and a deeper cocoa and mulberry plushness. Great balance, plenty of tannin but tight and fine into a long finish. Note price and stockist quoted at time of review are for the 2011 vintage.
(2016) It's as much about aroma and texture as it is about flavour in this dry, exotically-fruited and spiced interpretation of Gewurztraminer, with only 12.5% alcohol to retain juicy freshness, it stops way short of Gewurz tendency to be a little over-powering, and yet the lychee and Nivea cream aromas and fruit and spice flavours are terrifically expressive.
(2016) More density to this then the 2014, more concetration with the spice and openness knocked back in favour of chocolaty, blueberry depth. A full, chewy density of the texture and spicy black fruit, tannins tighter and certainly one with more ageing potential. Note price and stockist is for the 2013 vintage at time of review.
(2016) From younger vine fruit, but still 40-year-old vines. Lots of spice from open top ferment and then into older barrels of French oak, mostly larger hogsheads and puncheons, plus some big vats. Lots of cherry, blackberry and lighter rose-hip notes to match the spice and fruit depth. Very approachable. Price and stockist is for the 2013 vintage at time of review.
(2016) An unoaked cuvée inspired by the Juveniles wine bar in Paris, there is normally around 20% Mataro in the blend, but a poor crop in 2014 reduced that to 7% along with 85% Grenache and 8% Shiraz. "The Idea is to make an energetic, youthful GSM blend," says Stuart. It is more fragrant than the Woodcutter's, with a real bright berry fruit, hints of chocolate and briar, and it has a touch of forest floor too. In the end it's that juicy, fresh berry flavour that pushes through against pert acids and tannins, and it is just delicious. Note price and stockist is for the 2012 vintage at time of review.