Xanadu’s flagship Margaret River Cabernet Sauvignon is a blend of fruit from vineyards mostly in the northern and central parts of the region. The wine is typically 90% Cabernet Sauvignon plus 5% each Malbec and Petit Verdot. Small-batch fermentation is followed by an extended period of maceration on skins (to refine tannins) and 12-14 months in new (40-55%) and seasoned French oak barriques.
The final wine is assembled from a selection of the best barrels and spends another two months in older French oak to allow the components to intermarry before bottling. The result is a wine with intense blackcurrant and and herb garden aromas, superb richness and concentration, and vigorous, fine, chalky tannins.
There’s real power and style in this outstanding Cabernet. Glenn Goodall sources most of the fruit from Wilyabrup and Treeton. It’s highly scented but it is the palate that stamps its class. Power and structure with firmish but very fine chalky tannins, silky fine oak and superb fruit harnessed perfectly. A wine with a very long future.
98 points, West Australian
A Margaret River Cabernet of distinguished precision, hallmark integrity and grand, enduring stamina, this is a benchmark Xanadu that sits confidently among the great Cabernets of the world. There is depth yet elegance to its blackcurrant fruit poise, lifted with fragrant violet perfume, framed eloquently in the cedar and tobacco of classy French oak. Mineral-fine tannins mark out a finish that will effortlessly see out decades of potential.
98 points, tysonstelzer.com
Outstanding deep purple/red colour and a fresh, bright, youthful blackberry and cassis aroma. Full-body, excellent depth, weight and structure. Concentration plus. Rich, dense, alluring. A superb wine and a long-term keeper. (5% Cabernet Franc, 5% Malbec).
97 points, Real Review
A beautifully fine, tight and structured Cabernet. Youthful and primary with tight fruit and reserved oak. It is great to see a youthful wine unburdened by a plush, over-sweet palate. Red fruits, crushed herbs, fine tannins and integrated acidity. Just an infant. Needs time but the future is looking bright indeed.
96 points, Real Review
This is not your normal Margaret River Cabernet. It turns each of its flavour components up a notch over the competition and this gives it an exuberance and depth of fruit which is truly astounding. What remains the same is the cool, long, composed finish, so while your palate is rushing to compute what on earth is going on and warning lights start flashing, the tidy tannins and welcome relief from the acidity arrives just at the right time to press your reset button for you.
100 Best Australian Wines 2017 (UK)
Xanadu is at an historic peak in wine quality terms. This Reserve Cabernet is 90% Cabernet Sauvignon with 5% inputs from Petit Verdot and Malbec… It’s not as tannic or dark-coloured as some elite Margaret River Cabernet but its quality is abundantly clear. It sits at the upper end of mid-weight and is Cabernet to its back teeth, though it has both the perfume and fruit flesh to make it a delicious drink even in its youth. Dust, boysenberry, blackcurrant, bay leaves and gravel, with spiciness from oak, and a general smattering of both tobacco and spearmint. It feels secure in its own skin; it exudes an unforced impression of authority. Drink 2020-2030+
94 points, Wine Front, April 2017
Glorious! Edgy and complete with great fruit almost covering the fine tannins. Beautifully made. A standout wine. So opulent it could be enjoyed now but will go on and on. Energy and opulence. Sweet and opulent.
18.5/20 points, jancisrobinson.com, November 2017
Includes 5% each of Malbec and Petit Verdot, small batch fermentation in a mix of static and open vats, the Cabernet given extended post-ferment maceration for 28 days, matured for 14 months in French barriques before the blend assembled from a best barrels selection and then returned to oak for a further two months. An exceedingly clever bonding of fresh and complex fruit, fresh cassis at the core, wrapped in ripe tannins, herbs and cedary French oak; the length is impeccable, as is the balance. Easy when you're in Margaret River. Drink to 2039.
96 points, Wine Companion, March 2017
On the nose, a chorus of blood plum, pomegranate concentrate, summer raspberry, cassis, black cherry, blackberries, salted licorice, eucalypt, and a fresh earthy character rise to meet you. On the palate it is elegant, structured, dense (yet typified by finesse); the acidity, oak and fruit in perfect harmony. The French oak (50% new) is evident but judiciously contributing spice, structure and toast to the final blend. This is absolutely serious and yet already absolutely delicious (spelling danger for its long term residency in the cellar). Counting among its many attributes: ripeness that would make the Americans jealous; structure that would make the Bordealais weep; and elegance and concentration that will make the drinker/collector rejoice. This is an investment wine, one that will repay many decades in the cellar -- should you wish.
97 points, Subiaco Post (WA)
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.
XANADUJohn Lagan and family established Xanadu in the 1977 naming the property after Samuel Coleridge’s epic Kubla Khan or a Vision in a Dream. During the mid-1980s and 1990s Xanadu created a strong following for its muscular but energetic wines. After a brief interlude as a public company, it is now once more in private hands as part of the Rathbone Wine group. The Rathbone family has instigated a complete revitalisation of vineyard and wine making practise including lowering yields and optimising regional nuance. The 85 ha property is farmed along low input/organic lines and winemaking follows a minimal-intervention philosophy. Under winemaker Glenn Goodall, Xanadu is enjoying a major renaissance.