These have been hiding in the Cabernet section of the cellar for a few years now, so an excuse had to be found to try one, and so it was; we were still breathing, and thirst was approaching.I bought these years ago after the following review by James Halliday. This wine went from unknown to unavailable overnight. I found 5 bottles and the price had spiked to $30.00 within a week.
James Halliday, Australian Wine Companion – Published 26 Jul 2009:
A nigh-on perfect evocation of medium-bodied cabernet, the aroma and flavours wonderfully pure, with pinpointed accuracy to the cassis and blackcurrant fruit, the tannins exact, the oak likewise. $24.00. 97 pts. 14.5%, drink by 2022.
Some Notes from me:
Colour: Impenetrable deep inky red with still a hint of purple, still bright and clear.
Nose: Rich with black fruits, plums, chocolate, cassis. blackcurrant and sweet oak. Not entirely varietal but gorgeous.
Palate: Rich and full bodied, mouth coating, chocolate, blackberry, plums; tannins still firm and fine. Structure is firm but velvet coated, finish is long and luscious.
Thankfully these are in screwcap; for those that still prefer cork, I would simply say ‘you need to get over it’.
Notes from the Winemaker:
Deep Red colour with a purple hue. Intense aromas of fresh cassis, blackberries and earthy characters distinguish it as a wine of real complexity and depth. Cedar notes complement the rich palate of black fruits, spice and dried fruits. An elegant wine full of flavour with soft ripe tannins and excellent length. Enjoyable now, but cellaring for 10 years or more will enhance its appeal and value.
It’s no longer available of course, and, as noted it’s not as varietal as, say, a CS from Margaret River, but it is so delicious and well balanced, it’s such a rewarding wine to drink.
There are, and will be, some truly wonderful wines coming from the Great Southern Region of Western Australia. Houghton’s Jack Mann would be at the top of the GS wine tree. If you can get your hands on a 2008 version it’s a wine experience you will not forget.