Very deep, bright purple/red colour leads into a sweetly ripe, rich berry and violet bouquet which is fruit-driven, vibrant and fresh. Blueberries and herbs. Wonderfully elegant and piercingly intense. An outstanding wine. 97 points, The Real Review.
Spicy, intense with a polished texture and some balsam notes. Not nearly ready. Put it away! 18/20 points, jancisrobinson.com
The 2016 is 93% Cabernet, 5% Merlot with a dash of Malbec and Petit Verdot. The richness and depth of the fruit is immediately apparent and there’s a lightness to it. The tannins are good, adding some leafy notes. It drinks very well now which is not something you can often say about young Cabernet icons. They are often built to cellar but overwhelming in their youth. The enigma of the wine is it’s power with just 12.5% alcohol. The lighter touch allows the vitality of the fruit to shine without sacrificing persistence or complexity. 5/5 points, Fergal Gleeson, greatwineblog.com
93% Cabernet Sauvignon, 5% Merlot, 1% each of Malbec and Petit Verdot, matured for 14 months in French barriques (67% new). Elegance personified, no compromise likewise. Then rack up extraordinary attention to detail, and the Wilyabrup district, the greatest part of the Margaret River. Given these parameters, the fluid grace of this beautiful wine might seem almost inevitable. But, of course, it's not -- it's the distillation of two generations. 98 points, Wine Companion (7/2018).
'Here’s a sleek wine of exquisite perfume and balance that treads lightly, but surely through the palate. Dances, even. There’s a quiet storm of graphite tannin, red and black fruits, a distinct pencil and mineral thing going on, clean fresh acidity, and a wonderfully long finish. It’s painting with water colours, to borrow a phrase, but gee it makes a beautiful picture. It’s rare to find a Cabernet with this level of poise and control. Yet again, Cullen is leading the pack.'
96 points, Gary Walsh, The Wine Front, March 2018.
Located three hours south of Perth, Margaret River is Western Australia’s most prestigious wine-growing region. Serious vineyard development began only in the late 1960’s following the publication of a report by John Gladstones in 1965 stating that the area had a similar climate to Pomerol or St Emilion, with low frost risk, plenty of sunshine and equable temperatures within the growing season promoting even ripening. Margaret River’s climate is warm and maritime, with some cooling influence provided by southeast trade winds. The soils derive from granitic and a gneissic rock over which laterite has formed. The region can be divided in three sub-regions: the cooler south between Yallingup and Karridale with predominantly lateritic gravelly loamy sands and sandy loams; the warm and sunnier Willyabrup in the centre with predominantly gravelly loams, but some gritty sandy loams and granitic gravels; and Margaret River in the north with similar soils, but slightly cooler temperatures. This is entirely consistent with style; the wines from Willyabrup being more generous than the highly structured wines of the north and the elegant styles of the south. Margaret River is best known for high quality Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc Semillon blends and top notch Cabernet Sauvignon and Bordeaux blends. Over the years, the region has established an astonishing reputation illustrating a consistency in quality and a strongly focused winemaking culture.
CullenIn 1966 Diana and Dr Kevin Cullen planted a trial 0.4 ha vineyard on their sheep and cattle property at Willyabrup in the Margaret River. A new vineyard was planted in 1971 with further plantings made over the subsequent decades. Winemaker and environmentalist Vanya Cullen, a strong believer in biodynamic viticulture, has harnessed the rhythms of the cosmos, earth’s energy and vitality to "achieve greater individuality of site through working with nature rather than against it". Meticulous attention to vineyard management results in fruit of exceptional intensity, concentration, tannin ripeness and acid balance. The “quest for quality, integrity and sustainability” is also reflected in the carbon neutral and naturally powered winery where sound winemaking techniques and skills are married with empathy for vineyard character.