We are pleased to offer our valued customers the new vintage releases from these two iconic Margaret River wineries, Moss Wood and Cullen. We can highly recommend the two new release cabernets as excellent examples of what can be produced in Margaret River in an excellent year, albeit with quite differing characters – Moss Wood the more brooding and masculine, Cullen the more aromatic, elegant and feminine. Both are strong candidates for the cellar. Cullen’s Kevin John Chardonnay is also gathering a reputation as one of Australia’s finest, and the 2010 will only enhance this.
We have also thrown in a couple of excellent back vintages from our cellars at very special prices.
2009 Moss Wood Cabernet Sauvignon - $95 per bottle
The 2009 vintage in Margaret River was characterised by a cool, wet winter and a long, dry, mild summer. In general, yields were down, but fruit was generally excellent. Good producers have excelled in 2009 (we note that Cullen’s Diana Madeline Cabernet Merlot was awarded Jeremy Oliver’s Wine of the Year last year).
Deep brick red; bright condition. Initially the nose is slightly closed, presenting a complex combination of red currant, tar and leather. After a few minutes breathing, the fruit aromas lift, adding mulberry and violets. In the background there is a scented oak lift of toast and black pepper-like spice. A classic “small-crop” Moss Wood Cabernet Sauvignon. The theme of the palate is concentration and generosity. Ripe red currant flavours combine with some earthy flavours and fill the front and mid-palate. These sit over full body and excellent viscosity, the product of ripe, concentrated tannins, from both fruit and oak. These give the wine considerable length, leading to a finish of dusty, toasty oak.
1999 Moss Wood Cabernet Sauvignon - $139 per bottle (normally $169)
Wild, briary and concentrated aromas of minty small dark berry fruits, with a suggestion of varnish. Plush, smooth and steeped with intense flavours of sweet dark currants and blackberries. Long and richly structured, revealing some very ripe/dehydrated flavours of prunes, currants and bitumen, with a faint suggestion of volatility. 93 Points, drink 2011 to 2021. Jeremy Oliver
It’s a beautiful wine. Complex, silken, syrupy and persistent. Concentrated olive and blackcurrant fruit flavour, matched to highlights of gamey, undergrowthy tobacco and an arrestingly tight, tannic finish. It’s needs to relax. It needs time for that earthy, gamey richness to flood through the ripe churn of blackcurrant and cedar. 94 Points, drink 2008-2016 . Campbell Mattinson, The Wine Front
2010 Cullen Diana Madeline – $99 per bottle
The 2010 vintage in Margaret River continued a remarkable run of excellent vintages, stretching back to 2007. The 2010 Diana Madeline is comprised of 77% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Merlot, 6% Petit Verdot, 4% Malbec and 3% Cabernet Franc.
The 2010 season produced wines which were abundant in fruit and had excellent balance. In accordance with biodynamic principles, the grapes were hand harvested on fruit days from the Cabernet Sauvignon vines, which are now 39 years old. The fruit was carefully sorted before fermentation with indigenous yeasts and malolactic bacteria. No acid or yeast was added, producing a wine which has a sense of place through the grapes and natural winemaking techniques employed.Colour - Delicate crimson and garnet ruby.
Bouquet – The plum, mulberry and blackcurrant aromas cascade out of the glass bringing high notes of rose and violet. Savoury ironstone and tobacco complete the classic aroma profile of the Diana Madeline.
Palate - Fine grained tannin with uplifting and sustained fruit notes. Red fruit and plum flavours connect with the ironstone minerality, providing backbone and structure. This medium bodied elegance is deceptive as the depth and length on the palate are profound.
Cellaring - Drink now and up to 40 years.
2000 Cullen Cabernet Merlot (now Diana Madeline) - $125 per bottle (normally $149)
Pristine perfume of violets, dark berries and plums, lightly minty, dusty and smoky, over strongly scented vanilla/bubblegum/mocha oak. Classically long and silky, with a sumptuous depth of plush, pristine black berry/dark cherry fruit tightly integrated with supple, drying tannins and smoky fine-grained oak. Superb balance, length and harmony. 97 points, drink 2012-2020+. Jeremy Oliver
One of Australia's true benchmark wines, broodingly powerful in its youth, but slowly unfolding with age. Deeply coloured, the small red berry fruits and subtle oak of the bouquet give little hint of the lush red and black fruits of the palate, the powerful tannins showing the first signs of softening. Great blood lines. 95 points, drink to 2018. James Halliday
2010 Cullen Kevin John Chardonnay – $90 per bottle
These days I like Cullen’s white wines more than their reds, and I like this a little more than the 2009 Chardonnay – more harmonious. It’s a fine wine for sure, balancing flavour with restraint as effortlessly as it does. Grapefruit, fine spicy oak, cream and oatmeal, white flowers and an echo of tropical fruit, nicely repressed. Focussed, tangy and very long – oak spice and savoury elements pulling through on the finish. Quality of the acidity here is worthy of a special mention. Refreshing and complex at once. It needs some time to come together, but a terrific release from Cullen here. 96 points, drink 2014-2020+. Gary Walsh, The Wine Front
The warm dry summer of 2010 led to good yields of very high quality Chardonnay fruit that resulted in the production of a slightly richer wine than the excellent 2009. Indeed, 2010 represented the fourth consecutive outstanding vintage for all grape varieties at Cullen Wines. The fruit was picked in excellent physiological condition at a range of sugar levels. The elegance and complexity of the wine was enhanced by the use of basket pressing, which has the benefit of treating the fruit in a gentle manner.
Colour - Brilliant straw colour with green tinges.
Bouquet - Already complex, combining delightfully fresh citrus, paw paw, matchstick, gardenia and almond aromas.
Palate - Complex, elegant and very interesting. The fresh vibrant citrus flavours and attractive minerality lead into a crisp lingering and long finish. Delicious.