2014 Clairault Estate Cabernet Sauvignon
The Margaret River Wine Region has been blessed with eight great growing seasons in a row. Vintage 2014 started off with some late, heavy rainfall in September and two minor hail events in October. However from here on, there weren't any significant weather events until a heat spike the week prior to Christmas. The entire flowering period occurred in warm, mild conditions resulting in good fruit-set across all varieties. Vintage conditions were ideal for ripening all varieties with little or no disease present and no rainfall pressures.
The fruit is hand harvested, de-stemmed and crushed, so that each berry is just split. This is to ensure minimal berry degradation during the fermentation process and to promote fresh, clean flavour production by our very specifically selected yeast strain. Our ferments are, by industry standards, cool and gentle, allowing slower, more controlled extraction of tannin and flavour. The wine is pumped over three times a day and then judiciously backed off as the wine develops.
This wine was on skins in the fermenter for 14 days, before gentle pressing and barrelling down. The result is clean, pure fruit flavours, boasting supple yet powerful tannin. The wine was aged in 50% new French barriques for 18 months before the wine was removed from barrels, clarified and bottled.
Aromas of cherry blossom, mulberries and cedar dappled with hints of cigar box, aniseed and blueberries. The palate entry is focused with unbridled precision and drive. Fine grain, yet coating tannins descend into a dark fruit core held in perfect balance by taunt acidity and perfectly framed fruit tannins. A luscious finish with yet more cherries and simmering French oak leaves one both famished and nourished.
95 points - Ray Jordan's WA Wine Guide
Cellar for up to 20 years, however we enjoy it for freshness now.