A feature of the Langton’s Classification since its 1990 inception, “No . 1” remains one of Australia’s most sought-after Bordeaux style blends. It is principally a Cabernet Sauvignon affair, with Merlot, Malbec and Petit Verdot playing supporting roles. Described as a “classic claret-style”, it features bright, blackcurrant fruit characters, savoury complexity and fine-grained tannins. Originally made by the late great Dr Bailey Carrodus, this flagship of the Yarra has been in the hands of Sarah Crowe (James Halliday’s 2016 Winemaker of the Year) since the 2013 vintage.
"A classic blend of 70% cabernet sauvignon, 18% merlot, 8% malbec and 4% petit verdot. Hand-picked and sorted, crushed and destemmed, open-fermented, on skins for up to a month, matured for 12 months in French oak (35% new). This is the serious side of '17. The aromas and flavours are still fresh and vibrant, but the palate, in particular, brooks no argument: this is a wine for protracted cellaring to allow the whipcord-tight structure to relax its grip."
98 points, Wine Companion (January 2019)
"The approach is stunning. A full orchestra of aromas, blue fruits, cassis, floral things, herbal spice, bayleaf, malt, liquorice. Fantastic. The palate is fresh, invigorating, blue fruits, faint plum, black olive, lithe tannins and a light malt-oak sheath seasoning things. It rides long, fine, light-on, but tense, with exceptional length and a pool of mouth-watering, gently sweet-sour fruit lingering long. It’s an understated, superb, detailed wine of exceptional feel and high drinkability."
96+ points, The Wine Front (June 2019)
"Deep, dark red/purple colour and some smoky oak makes its presence felt on the fruit-driven bouquet. The wine is deliciously accessible in the mouth with elegant fruit and soft, fine-grained tannins. Violet, cassis, mulberry, blackberry aromas come up increasingly with aeration. The wine is not big, but medium to full-bodied and suavely proportioned, seemingly with moderate alcohol strength, the finish gliding on effortlessly."
96 points, The Real Review (May 2019)
"This is complex and very rich with sliced berries, spices and flowers throughout. Full-bodied. Very soft and fine tannins on the palate. Long and flavorful finish. Extremely balanced and refined. A blend of 70% cabernet sauvignon, 18% merlot, 8% malbec and 4% petit verdot."
97 points, JamesSuckling.com (June 2019)
Yarra ValleyThe Yarra Valley was first planted by the Ryrie brothers who explored a way through the Snowy Mountains to the Yarra Valley, planting grapes in 1838 just three years after the foundation of Melbourne. A wine industry (developed by Swiss Settlers particularly Hubert de Castella and Baron Guillaume de Pury in the 1850s) thrived during the gold rush era and heyday of the 19th century. However, the end of the gold rush brought the wine industry into decline and it was not until the 1970’s that the modern wine industry started up again. The region is probably Australia’s best-known cool-climate area, yet it is really a patchwork of meso-climates. This varied topography creates an incredible set of variables. Vineyards are planted on elevations of 50 to 400m on varying aspects and management programmes. The more exposed sites are subject to severe spring frosts and winds. Overall, the area experiences a relatively high rainfall pattern and is known for its temperature extremes during ripening. Site selection is crucial, with the best vineyards often located where the original vines were once planted, generally on sandy clay loams and gravels. The Yarra Valley is well known for high quality Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Cabernet Blends with Shiraz increasingly garnering attention. Sparkling wine production is also extremely important, with many of Australia’s finest examples produced in the region.