This Agincourt shows classic Cabernet notes of cassis and dark fruits and berries, along with a characteristic leafy herbaceousness. The Malbec gives the wine a plummy, dark cherry roundness and, of course, more tannin.
The fruit for this Cabernet Malbec was sourced from Yarra Yering’s Agincourt block in the most easterly and sheltered part of their vineyard–Cabernet Sauvignon planted in 1995 and Malbec planted in 1990.
Hand-picked, crushed and destemmed into open-top fermenters. The cap is managed twice daily with extra time on skins that softens the tannins. Basket pressed prior to MLF (malolactic fermentation) in seasoned French (Bordeaux) barrels and allowed to mature for 18 months.
"A 75/25% blend, hand-picked and sorted, 65% crushed and destemmed, 30% whole berry, 5% whole bunches, open-fermented, 10-14 days on skins, matured in used French oak. Malbec functions as shiraz does in conjunction with cabernet, in each case filling the mid-palate and softening the cabernet tannins if needs be. This is a luscious wine, but doesn't have the drive of its '17 siblings."
94 points, Wine Companion (January 2019)
"This is a very inviting wine, set to medium weight, fresh and vital, sleek in tannin, restrained, and though drinkable right now, one for the cellar in the mould of old school Yarra. I liked it from first whiff and sip. Scents of green herb, sage and bayleaf over red and black berries, cassis, the palate follows a similar motif though there’s a shy sweetness that takes things away a little, tart-brined lemon acid poking out to finish, and the glossiness to texture does begin to feature. That being said, there’s lots to like here, lots."
94 points, The Wine Front (June 2019)
"Deep red/purple colour, youthful and bright. The bouquet is subtle, restrained and exuding violet and blueberry to raspberry aromas, backed by attractive and well-harmonised oak. It's medium to full-bodied and fresh, youthful and bright, with freshening acidity and a clean, refreshing finish. A delightfully elegant drop of red wine."
95 points, The Real Review (May 2019)
"A rich and layered blend of 75% cabernet sauvignon and 25% malbec, this red shows a lovely softness and balance with rich, plummy aromas and flavors, as well as currants and spices. Cedar, too. Full body. Round tannins."
96 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.