By Fergal Gleeson
Read my pick of some excellent Cabernets and a Merlot from Margaret River.
Houghton Wisdom Cabernet Sauvignon 2017 RRP $35
Houghton is one of Western Australia’s most iconic wineries, founded by three British army officers in 1836. Their ranges spans everything from everyday wine to premium offerings. Houghton’s Wisdom range has a single region focus with Cabernet from Margaret River and Chardonnay and Pinot Noir from Pemberton.
The Cabernet is a very sophisticated drop with texture, fruit depth, tannins and briary flavours. It shows off just how the good the region can be with the variety and is great value.
Xanadu Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon 2017 RRP $40
A classic Margaret River Cabernet from the cooler 2017 vintage. Elegant and silky with no hard edges. Walks the line perfectly between being easy to enjoy but holding complexity and interest. Drink now or later.
Has won trophies and gold medals galore. The 2016 won the Jimmy Watson, arguably Australia’s greatest red wine prize.
Founded in 1977, Xanadu’s Cellar Door and acclaimed Restaurant are open daily (Top 50 West Australian Food Guide 2017 & 2018 and a Chef Hat- Australian Good Food Guide 2019).
Fraser Gallop Parterre Cabernet Sauvignon 2017 RRP $50
Classically balanced Cabernet dominant blend (86%) with a smooth texture. Parterre Cabernet always manages fruit generosity with structure and brings to mind high quality Bordeaux more than most other Margaret River producers.
Winemaker Clive Otto is a maestro at making wines that are enjoyable now but also cellerable. I have many back vintage Parterres sitting in my cellar.
The other wines in the Parterre range – Semillon Sauvignon Blanc and Chardonnay are also exceptional.
Moss Wood Merlot 2017 RRP $70
Modelled on the great Merlots of Pommerol and St Emillion, Moss Wood Merlot is now considered one of the country’s best. I’ve beaten the drum for the last few vintages and 2017 again demonstrates the point. Fresh and vibrant with glossy fruit, touch of leather and smooth tannins, it’s satisfying and age worthy.
Moss Wood is one of Margaret River’s oldest wineries with their first plantings made 50 years ago. Their range of reds includes three impressive Cabernets, a Merlot and Pinot Noir as well as very good Semillon and an SBS. Visits to Moss Wood are by appointment.
Cullen Wines 2016 ‘Flower Day’ Vanya RRP $500
Treat yourself! Vanya 2016 is an exquisite biodynamic wine from the original 1971 plantings. Delicious bright, flavours of fruit, tobacco leaf and tannin are already integrating beautifully. Vanya estimates the wine has a 50+ year lifespan but the surprise was how silky and smooth it is now.
Previous editions have been awarded Australia’s best Cabernet by the Halliday companion. A decadent purchase but less than half the price of Bordeaux first growths. Cullen Wines is certified biodynamic and carbon neutral.
From Your Margaret River Region Magazine