Quintet is a classically proportioned style based on five classic Bordeaux varieties; Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Malbec, Merlot and Petit Verdot. The wine exhibits a purity of fruit, poise, elegance and structure found in few Australian Cabernets with cedar and blackcurrant "small fruit" aromas, fine-grained savoury tannins, superb vinosity and flavour length. Naturally balanced, well-concentrated and classically proportioned, the wine has a great reputation for longevity.
The grapes are hand harvested, lightly crushed, totally destemmed, fermented in both open and closed fermenters with careful temperature control and frequent pumping over. Malolactic fermentation takes place once primary fermentation is completed. After the lees have settled, the wine is de-vatted to 30% new French oak barriques and 70% large format oak casks in its first year. In its second year, the wine is racked into seasoned two to six-year-old barriques for 10 months.
A terrific wine of superb balance and focus. Its smoky bouquet of small dark berries and plums overlies nuances of mushrooms, minerals and restrained cedary oak. Supremely long, elegant and fine-grained, it still presents remarkable depth and richness of dark cherry, plum and berry flavour underpinned by fine, crunchy tannins, nuances of dried herbs and suggestions of briar and undergrowth. It finishes with exceptional length and tight-knit acidity. 97 points, jeremyoliver.com
Comprised of 50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 24% Merlot, 17% Cabernet Franc and small proportions of Malbec and Petit Verdot, the 2006 Quintet spent 22 months in barrel, 30% of which was large format and just 30% new oak... Deep garnet in colour, this wine has restrained aromas of cassis, dried Mediterranean herbs, graphite and loam plus pinches of cardamom and cloves. Light to medium-bodied with high acid and medium-firm finely grained tannins, this wine finishes very long. 94 points, robertparker.com
All about subtlety and finesse; while medium-bodied, has deceptive intensity and length, the five varieties seamlessly moulded into a mix of black and red fruits, fine tannins and a gently savoury finish. Oak? Yes, it's there, but you don't notice it. 94 points, winecompanion.com.au
Vivid ruby. Strikingly pure and complex bouquet of redcurrant, cherry, spicecake, tobacco and cedar. Pliant, focused red berry flavours are given depth by notes of mocha and cola, finishing with silky tannins and a slow-building mineral quality. With its clarity and lingering spiciness, this reminds me of a high-end Pauillac. 94 points, International Wine Cellar.
...displays complex aromas of balsam wood, sage, rosemary, cinnamon violets, black currant, and blackberry. Elegant on the palate with a plush texture, this subtle effort is all about finesse. It will evolve for several years in the manner of a top level St.-Julien. 92 points, Jay Miller, robertparker.com
Quintet is just about the most elegant wine you can find in Victoria, this vintage being a prime example of the style. It starts with structure, a cool soil character to the tannin, a flinty aspect. Then it builds in fragrance, from rose to red berries and sweet herbs. The complexity and persistence of flavour become more remarkable with air; rather than opening out, it has a gentle magnetism that draws you in. A worthwhile collectible from Australia, this has years of development ahead. 95 points, Joshua Greene.
Beautifully elegant wine. Leather and tar, mulberry and mint. Elegance plus. Juicy through the finish. Not a lot of tannin. Mouthfeel and balance is the key. A delicate cabernet. Charming. 92 points, WineFront (8/2010).
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.