A case for cabernet sauvignon
A trip around Australian regions via a cabernet sauvignon tasting. Wines from the Granite Belt, Mudgee, Tasmania, Barossa Valley, Clare Valley, Fleurieu Peninsula, McLaren Vale, Margaret River, Pyrenees and some regional blends.
No more need be said, as each wine articulates itself.
Robert Channon Granite Belt Cabernet Sauvignon 2014: Straightforward, well made, lighter style of cabernet. 91 points and worth $20.
Huntington Estate Mudgee Cabernet Sauvignon 2009: It’s good to have a cabernet with some age and value, as it’s only $26. It’s not great wine but it is very sound. 93 points.
Domaine A Tasmania Cabernet Sauvignon 2006: The wine contains small amounts of merlot, cabernet franc and petit verdot, making it a classic Bordeaux blend. I would like to taste it hidden in a range of bordeaux to see if or how far it stands out (better or worse). It’s slow to start but intriguing flavours unfurl as it travels. It has an unusual combination of rustic and sophisticated: one moment farm girl, the next her ladyship. It works. 94 points, and though it seems pricy at $120 from Dan’s, it’s not expensive in global terms.
Yalumba ‘Y Series’ South Australia Cabernet Sauvignon 2014: Easy drinking red wine that does a job for the price, at $13 and often less. 89 points.
Geoff Hardy ‘GMH’ South Australia Cabernet Sauvignon 2015: Pleasing from nose to final sip. There’s no disappointment on the journey, but it doesn’t hit the high notes for me. 93 points and value at $20.
Fox Gordon ‘King Louis’ Barossa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2014: It’s plump, and there’s nothing wrong with plump now and again. This is a wine to sink into, as in turn it sinks into the drinker. 94 points and on the expensive side at $55.
Reillys ‘Dry Land’ Clare Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2013: It drinks OK but didn’t excite me. Too hot, and disjointed. 88 points and there is plenty of good cabernet around at $33.
Zonte’s Footstep ‘Avalon Tree’ Fleurieu Peninsula Cabernet Sauvignon 2014: Mainly cabernet with an addition of tempranillo. Sun-kissed came to mind on tasting. Flavours are in the full, ripe, plum, red fruits spectrum. Enjoyable but rich. 91 points and an OK price at $25.
Inkwell ‘Pressure Drop’ McLaren Vale Cabernet Sauvignon 2014: This has a warmth that suggests rich stews, dark evenings and a fire. But a spell in the fridge does this wine no harm. It’s still elegant and charming and lifts the soul a notch. 94 points and an OK price at $40.
Allegiance Wines ‘Kindred’ Cabernet Sauvignon 2014: No region is given, so this could be from one or a blend of regions. No matter, it is cabernet and it drinks well with a plate of food or with friends. Not a serious wine but not one to be dismissed either. 90 points and worth $15.
Vasse Felix ‘Filius’ Margaret River Cabernet Sauvignon 2014: A new addition to the VF cabernet family, this is good, juicy, well made cabernet that drinks very well now. 93 points and worth $28.
Mount Avoca ‘Back Block’ Pyrenees Cabernet Sauvignon 2014: A wine of many flavours, which twist themselves around the palate, moving from savoury to black fruits to something feral, back to fruits (plum this time) and on to savoury again. A fantastic journey. 95 points and well worth $45.