James Halliday "Blackcurrant, blackberry, plum and dark chocolate in a medium- to full-bodied frame; built-in tannins and moderate length."
94 Points - James Halliday
Deep crimson-purple; quite lifted and focused red fruits on the bouquet; full-bodied, the palate is full of rich, bright fruits and is surprisingly long.
90 Points - James Suckling
Attractive, clear blackberry and currant aromas with hints of flowers. Medium to full body, fine tannins and a fresh and clean finish. A very drinkable cabernet.
Decanter World Wine Awards: Silver 2018
Aromas of ripe red plums, cherries, redcurrants, with notes of herbs and spices like tobacco, nutmeg and cocoa. Smooth, supple tannins linger on the finish.
91 Points - Decanter "Graphite and mineral nose, with lifted black fruit aromas. Medium bodied with restrained and elegant tannins. Savoury and sappy with juicy, supple dark fruits behind it. Cracking value for money!"
The Château Tour de Sarrail 2009 has a beautifully defined nose of blackberry, minerals and well integrated oak but it needs patience to unite in the glass. Medium-bodied, contained, focused, with well-integrated if prominent new oak towards its long finish.
94 Points - James Halliday
Deep colour; abounds with blackberry, dark plum, chocolate and licorice fruit; restrained oak; delicious finish.
90 Points - Robert Parker
One of Australia’s most traditional winemakers, Colin Kay fashions old style, high quality, distinctive Australian reds. The spicy, earthy, tobacco, cherry, and currant-scented 2003 Cabernet Sauvignon is borderline rustic, but spicy, big, chewy, and attractive. It is by no means from the refined school of winemaking, but it possesses so much personality and soul, it is hard not to give it a high rating.
Jay Miller (erobertparker.com)
There are 9,000 cases of the 2005 Explorateur Old Vines Shiraz (with 12% Cabernet Sauvignon in the blend). It was aged for 12 months in French oak and bottled unfiltered. Purple-colored, it displays reticent aromas of toast, scorched earth, tar, blueberry, and blackberry. Ripe and sweet, with some elegance, it has good depth, moderate tannin, and a medium-long finish. Give it 3-4 years in the cellar and drink it through 2020.
International Wine Challenge: Bronze 2008
92 Points - Stuart McCloskey
‘Brilliant’ in one word and a wine that should not garner 92+ given its low price tag. Make no mistake; this is a very serious wine which demands you seek it out.
91 Points - Robert Parker
This winery does a superb job with Cabernet Sauvignon, which is aged in both new and old French oak. The dark ruby/purple-colored 2002 Cabernet Sauvignon Lime Cave exhibits a sweet perfume of creme de cassis, spice box, vanilla, and menthol, well-integrated acidity and tannin, and a pure, well-delineated, nicely textured finish. It is nearly impossible to find California Cabernet Sauvignon of this quality at such a price. This is an impressive as well as realistically priced offering.
95 Points - Campbell Mattinson (The Wine Front)
It’s much like last year’s release with just a bit more weight. It’s a better wine as a result. This is a powerful, sturdy red, built Tonka Tuff, with blackcurrant, black olive and bay/gum leaf notes rumbling throughout. In flavour terms it’s almost into gravel territory, and indeed almost into coffee grounds/bitter chocolate. Ropes of muscular tannin pull assuredly through the fruit,. This will be a 25 year+ wine. It is excellent.
94 Points - Stuart McCloskey
Utterly delicious and drinks beautifully now. Crème de Cassis, blackcurrant and a touch of pencil shavings on the nose. Medium bodied with a gorgeous smorgasbord of crisp red and black fruits. The tannins are silky and the finish is long - Such wonderful purity.
91 Points - Campbell Mattinson (The Wine Companion)
In some ways it's light and juicy, in others it's every bit a child of the Barossa. It tastes of asphalt, blackberry and gum leaves, and is firm through the finish, but it's not heavy and indeed generally feels effortless.
92 Points - James Suckling
Blackberry and blueberry aromas follow through to a medium body, firm tannins and a fresh finish. Black currant and walnut undertones. Lots of fruit but an underlying freshness as well.
Stuart McCloskey - 94 Points "A 100% Cabernet Sauvignon aged several years in wood. Pleasing Pauillac-like nose of black currants, cedar wood, tobacco leaf, and spice box. The combination of eucalypt and blackberry/mulberry fruits are in complete harmony with the sweet cigar-box characters and ripe, juicy tannins. A sensational steal and profoundly brilliant at this price!"
91 Points - Jay Miller (erobertparker.com)
The 2005 Etranger Cabernet Sauvignon contains 12% Shiraz. Opaque purple-colored, it emits aromas of cedar, spice box, tobacco, tar, espresso, black currant, and blackberry. Supple-textured, with excellent depth and breadth, a light tannin blanket, and a long finish, this flavorful Cabernet merits 5-7 years (tasted Oct 2007)of further bottle age and should provide pleasure through 2020.
92 Points - James Halliday
Medium to full-bodied; black fruits interwoven with savoury tannins and a touch of regional chocolate.
The wine shows an abundance of layered flavours and with careful wine making practices has made a fuller yet softer style, well structured, balance and the palate has great length.
95 Points - James Halliday
A 70/30% blend separately made, but using similar steps: open-fermented in 1-tonne pots, cabernet 14 days post-fermentation maceration, touriga 11 days, pressed to French barriques (20% new) for 24 months, blended with a further 2 years in bottle, 350 dozen made. This is left field, but irresistible with its array of cedar, spice and cassis in utter harmony, each flattering the other.
95 Points - James Halliday
The cabernet comes from a 25-year-old vineyard in Wilyabrup, the touriga from a 35-year-old patch of vines in Yallingup. The parcels were separately open-fermented, and thereafter spent two years in French oak (20% new); once blended and bottled, the wine was held for 2 years prior to release. Some colour development; a super-elegant, medium-bodied wine, with supple blackcurrant/black cherry flavours, fine-grained tannins and great length. 250 dozen made.
91 Points - James Halliday
70/30%, fermented separately in open-fermenters, the cabernet remaining on skins for 17 days, the touriga for 9 days, matured in French oak (20% new) for 24 months, plus a further 24 months bottle age. Stuart Pym has got his teeth into this bone, and isn't about to let go. It's got flavour, texture, structure, a point of difference - what it doesn't have is the finesse or logic of his other wines.
92 Points - Lisa Perrotti-Brown (erobertparker.com)
Composed of 94% Cabernet Sauvignon and 6% Shiraz, the 2008 Cabernet Sauvignon was 100% barrel fermented and aged for 12 months in 60% new oak and 40% one-year-old oak, with 55% American and 45% French barrels. It presents a deep garnet color and aromas of black currant cordial, black cherry preserves and dried plums over spice box, cloves, pencil lead, toast plus a whiff of lavender. Very full bodied and richly fruited in the mouth, the generosity of spicy berry flavors is well supported by a medium to firm level of very finely grained tannins and very crisp acid, finishing long and layered.
95 Points - Joe Czerwinski (RobertParker.com)
Prettier and more aromatic than the very good 2015, the 2016 Cuthbert Cabernet Sauvignon hints at violets and mint on the nose and adds hints of cherries to the cassis fruit. Medium to full-bodied, it's supple, almost silky on the palate, with a finish that's simultaneously mouthwatering and firmly tannic. It should drink well for at least a decade.
94 Points - James Suckling
Flowers, black licorice, blackberries and minerals all rise to the surface. Transparent. Medium to full bodied, polished and ultra-fine. This is a wine guided for a long time by the owner of Pomerol’s l’Eglise Clinet. Regal. Drink now or hold.
92 Points - Neal Martin
The 2015 Montlandrie was precocious out of barrel but now it has learned some manners and blossomed into a more refined and sophisticated Castillon Côtes de Bordeaux, the 45% new oak beautifully assimilated. The palate is medium-bodied with supple tannin, perfectly pitched acidity, a little savory and dried blood surfacing toward the finish to complete a glorious wine that fulfills its promise from barrel. I suspect this will be longer lasting than many will allow it. Anticipated maturity: 2019 – 2035.
92 Points - Robert Parker
Aged 10 months in new French oak, the intensely varietal 2003 Cabernet Sauvignon Serpico boasts a fragrant black currant, floral, tobacco leaf, and spice box-scented nose along with intense fruit, wonderful purity, superb density, and remarkable elegance as well as definition. It will be interesting to see how this beauty evolves and ages.
The deep ruby/purple-colored 2004 Cabernet Sauvignon exhibits a restrained, elegant bouquet of black fruits, minerals, and toasty new oak. Medium to full-bodied, with excellent concentration, purity and texture.
92 Points - Lisa Perotti-Brown (erobertparker.com)
The 2008 Hickinbotham Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon has a very deep garnet-purple color and intense notes of black currant juice, Provence herbs, kirsch, chocolate, espresso, pencil shavings and iron ore. Full-bodied, very crisp and rich with a high level of fine tannins, it has a long coffee laced finish. Drink it 2012 to 2018.
96 Points - Joe Czerwinski (RobertParker.com)
This wine was made together with Sean, Bridget and Jessica Hobbs, their 'kids', or Tin Lids as they were often called. Their youthful influence on this traditional Aussie blend has resulted in a vibrant wine with the fresh herbal flavours of Cabernet merging seamlessly with the rich dark red and blackberry flavours of Shiraz.
On the nose, you’ll find liquorice and blackberry essence, spicy notes of pepper and sage with a hint of freshly picked mint, meaty and savoury aromas and subtle notes of cedar. The palate is full-bodied with dark red and blackberry flavours and the lovely herbaceous characteristics of Cabernet Sauvignon The wine has a fresh acidity, very fine grain tannins and a long perfumed finish.
2018 Halliday Cabernet Challenge Winner: Margaret River Best of Region
Margaret River Wine Show Trophy: Best Red Wine of Show 2018
Winemakers notes "A single vineyard wine made from grapes that come from Wild Duck Creek’s original vineyard planted by David back in 1974. A blend of Cabernet Sauvignon (74%), Cabernet Franc (11%), Merlot (11%), Malbec (4%) from extremely low yielding vines that maximise concentration, David and Liam choose to leave out the final pressing from their basket press that results in a medium bodied wine of elegance and finesse. Matured in 100% new French oak hogsheads for 22 months, Alan’s Cabernet will age with grace."
92+ Points - Jay Miller (erobertparker.com)
The 2007 Cabernet Sauvignon Hickinbotham offers the most saturated color. The aromatics feature Asian spices, violets, and incense along with expressive black fruits. Structured and tannic, bordering on austere on the palate, it is a muscular, brawny effort that will require 6-8 years of cellaring to become approachable.
95 Points - Robert Parker
A gorgeous effort, the 2005 Cabernet Sauvignon screams blueberries, creme de cassis, licorice, cedar, and spice box. The oak component can not stand up to the lavish, extravagant amounts of fruit and glycerin. This intense, full-bodied, surprisingly pure and elegant Cabernet should last at least a decade.
18.5 Points – Jancis Robinson
Bright garnet. Pale rim. Broad and rich with a minty note. More mainstream than many in terms of its build and flavours. Still evolving but beautifully balanced. Lots of energy and transparency. No heaviness at all. Rich but lifted. Already gorgeous but there are tannins behind the exotic fruit and brilliant freshness. Still quite youthful.
91 Points – Neal Martin
The 2014 Gloria has a ripe and voluminous bouquet with plenty of blackberry, raspberry, pencil box and cedar aromas all well defined. The palate is medium-bodied with fine tannin, quite focused and poised with very well integrated new oak. There is plenty of freshness here, a 2014 Saint Julien full of energy with a persistent graphite finish that is very satisfying. Like its sibling, the Saint-Pierre, there is great potential here. Tasted blind at the annual Southwold tasting.
98 Points - Bob Campbell
This dense, rich and quite complex red is a top example from a top vintage. Warm, generous wine with ripe berry fruits, spice, tobacco leaf and a hint of chocolate/mocha character. Deliciously accessible now but with the power and density to develop well.
Rich and very lively on the nose. Real freshness and raciness. Beautiful wine! Really vibrant and rich. But with masses of energy. Just very slightly dry on the end. But such a charmer!
Château Pontet Canet’s second wine, which is made in tiny quantities because much of the fruit is good enough to make Pontet Canet itself...
92 Points - Wine Enthusiast
There's no mistaking the variety, with plentiful aromas of fresh herb and cherry alongside vanilla and light barrel accents. The dark fruit flavors are supple with a mesmerizing texture and an exquisite balance that extends through the coffee-filled finish. The attention to detail throughout is impressive, especially for a wine at this price.
92 Points - Stuart McCloskey
Clearly, lacking the extravagance of the Grand Vin however, it’s difficult not to be impressed. Silky / supple tannins work harmoniously with the high quality fruit. Cabernet flavours dominate with blackberry leaf, cassis with a touch of cocoa coming through as the wine starts to reach its tenth birthday. Really delicious but does require 2-3 hours in a decanter.
Decanter World Wine Awards: Bronze 2018
Hawkes Bay A&P Wine Awards 2016: Gold
97 Points - Sam Kim, Wine Orbit
19.0+ Points - Raymond Chan
98 Points - Bob Campbell "Very impressive Gimblett Gravels Cabernet Sauvignon with textbook varietal flavours of cedar/cigar box, cassis plus a subtle hint of fresh herbs and with a seasoning of very classy oak. This is a flagship wine that thoroughly justifies its exalted status. Should develop magnificently with bottle age." - Bob Campbell
96 Points - James Halliday
97 Points - James Halliday
The bouquet provides a perfect idea of what is abut to follow on the full-bodied palate: towering blackcurrant fruit with bay leaf, black olive and earth all dripping from the fruit where they meet implacable tannins and a poultice of French oak.
96 Points - Jay Miller (erobertparker.com)
The 2006 Cabernet Sauvignon Hickinbotham Vineyard is the most muscular and densely packed of the Cabernets. This opulent effort will evolve for a minimum of a decade and drink well through 2036.The 2006 Cabernet Sauvignon Hickinbotham Vineyard is the most muscular and densely packed of the Cabernets. This opulent effort will evolve for a minimum of a decade and drink well through 2036. Roman Bratasiuk’s Clarendon Hills is one of the world’s great wine estates. The wines are all 100% varietal...
The selection process under proprietor Bruno Borie is so severe at Ducru Beaucaillou that readers should be giving serious attention to the second wine, Croix de Beaucaillou, which sports a dramatic black and gold label. The 2011 exhibits attractive black currant and black cherry fruit, medium body, silky tannins and a lush, round, up-front appeal. Enjoy it over the next decade.
93 Points - Robert Parker
A combination of 70% Shiraz, 20% Cabernet Sauvignon, and 10% Merlot aged 18 months in wood (15% new), the 2002 Keyneton Estate boasts impressive intensity, richness, concentration, and aromatics (black currants, licorice, earthy spice, and a hint of wood). A beauty, with a meatiness to its richness and intensity, it should drink well for a decade or more.
91 Points - Stuart McCloskey
Alfred and his team produced a super-delicious wine during a difficult vintage. The Grand Vin equalling all the First-Growths and his second wine is comfortably comparable (if not better) than many second wines for double the money. This is a refined Pauillac and drinking beautifully now...
97 Points - James Halliday
A 70/15/10/5% blend of cabernet sauvignon, merlot, malbec and petit verdot planted in '69, matured for 20 months in 100% new French barriques. Deep crimson-purple, it proclaims its regal birth with the first whiff of the bouquet, the first sip of the palate. Always great, this medium to full-bodied wine pushes past previous vintages with the sheer perfection of its flavour profile, mouthfeel, and, above all else, its balance.
Axel Heinz, Winemaker