Wines for Winter- Final

By Fergal Gleeson

Cape Mentelle 2016-Cabernet-Merlot

Cape Mentelle Cabernet Merlot Trinders 2016 RRP $31

Cape Mentelle Trinders is designed to be highly drinkable in it’s youth but also to go for 10+ years in the cellar. The 2015 was jaw droppingly good and I wondered if this vintage could replicate it. Thankfully it does.

Trinders 2016 leads with blackcurrant fruit but there’s also a smokiness and sinewy tannins which add complexity. It gets the balance just right between ripe fruit and the extra character that lifts a red above the ordinary.

Margaret River produces some very good Cabernet Merlots around the $30 price point and this one of the best of them.

The Cellar Door is open daily with a variety of options in terms of tastings and private tours. Events include Cape Mentelle at the Movies and the International Cabernet Challenge.


Fraser Gallop Parterre Cabernet 2015 RRP $45

Fraser Gallop Parterre Cabernet is one of the most ‘Bordeaux’ like Margaret River Cabernets. I’ve a few hibernating in the cellar with a 7-10 year drinking window in mind.

The 2015 shows sweet fruit but interwoven with black tea and leather. There’s plenty of intrigue and a bright finish. All in all a cerebral wine that holds it’s own in any company.

It now sits in the middle of the Fraser Gallop Cabernet offering with Palladian at the top and the Cabernet Merlot as the entry point.

Cellar door open daily. Weekend tours start at 10am. Keep an eye on the website as they hold regular events.


Fishbone Joseph River Cabernet Sauvignon 2015 RRP $65

Joseph River Cabernet Sauvignon is the ‘alpha male’ of the Fishbone range. The ambition is to emulate elite Bordeaux.

The wine has pedigree also, a previous vintage won the Jimmy Watson trophy, Australia’s most established red wine award.

The flavours are of black fruit, olives and bay leaf. This wine will come into it’s own in 5 plus years. Below Joseph, Fishbone Wines have two tiers of wines: the Black Label range of premium, age worthy wines and the Blue Label of easy drinking wines.

Cellar Door open daily. Their Japanese Restaurant at the Cellar Door, was a finalist in the 2017 Gold Plate Awards.


Vanya Cullen in vineyard
Vanya Cullen in the vineyard

Cullen Diana Madeline 2017                       RRP $129

If you were putting together the iconic Australian half dozen you might well have a Cullen Diana Madeline as your Cabernet representative such is it’s track record.

2017 was a cool and long vintage for Margaret River and Vanya has produced an elegant rather than opulent Cabernet blend. It’s restrained at just 13% alcohol.

There’s nothing showy – the focus is on purity. All in all it’s a beautiful artisanal wine.

Cullen Wines is one of Margaret River’s first wineries. Vanya Cullen is a passionate environmentalist. Cullen is certified biodynamic and the winery is carbon neutral.

The Cellar Door is open daily. There are private winery tours options, accommodation and a ‘two chef hatted’ restaurant.

From Your Margaret River Region Magazine


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