Yarra Valley Cabernet blend. Masterfully done. Mount Mary Quintet doesn’t muck around here. It’s a classic style, take it or leave it. It’s architectural, sparse, built on the finest of bones, enduring. It shows notes of pencils and berries, tobacco and leafy herbs, but it’s the acid and the tannin, the slow inevitability of it. Come back in 10 years. Drink 2015-2035. 95+ points, Campbell Mattinson (winefront.com.au)
Bright, clear colour; the fruit-filled, fragrant bouquet is followed by a classic Mount Mary palate: medium-bodied, and with a certain transparency akin to an orchestra with different instruments, the very essence thereof; near the flute are red fruits, the violin the black fruits, the bassoon tannins – all very different, but all in harmony, the sum of the parts greater than the whole. 96 points, James Halliday (winecompanion.com.au)
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.