This Aussie Cab Sauv comes in a pretty dark and dense red color. Somewhat bright and looking shiny and clean, but intense and deep.
The nose is very powerfully scented, feeling warm, fruity, and deep.
What first strikes, the lightest notes, the ones that come out of the glass first to reach you senses, are clear smoky notes, the type of smoked character you get in smoked meats. Quite rare with such clarity, and pleasant too.
Then the powerful dark berry aromas sink in, accompanied by a wealth of punchy spices, nutmeg and clove. Black pepper and a hint of bell pepper marry the super-ripe (but not jammy) dark cheery and blackberry notes, somewhat of a spiced wood berries liqueur to the profile.
The wine is ample and rich to the palate, with fine granulous tannins and quite a full body. But there is a wealth of acidity too keeping the sensation quite fresh, underlining and freshening up the berry notes, making them taste like fresh berries rather than jam.
A huge burst of peppery spices hits your sense from the mid-palate on, almost like peppermint, giving way to savory notes of licorice and sandal wood to the finish. There is plenty of oaky flavors all along the tasting as well, rich vanilla, caramel, and coconut reminding us we are here with a ‘double barrel’ wine.
The oak remains quite well integrated though, and never feels overwhelming. It does let the wine and the fruit speak for themselves. Yet, it’s obvious the oak ‘treatment’ has added a heap of spices and a solid dose of torrefaction flavors (coffee, dark cocoa), but it doesn’t feel exaggerated to my palate.
A powerful Cabernet Sauvignon, with a rich, opulent, utterly spicy, and fruity character. Yet, it feels balanced and somewhat controlled by a good acidity keeping things fresh and enjoyable. Yes, the oak is present, and we won’t complain about it since it’s what buyers will be after here, but the amount that’s been infused is under control, letting the Coonawarra fruit shine through.
Well made, balanced on the rich side of things, with an enjoyable savory/fruity feel, hints of grip and varietal characters to the finish.