2017 Woodlands Clementine
Clémentine’ is Woodlands’ Brook Vineyard Cabernet blend. Produced since 2015, the Malbec, Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot grapes were already planted when the vineyard was purchased in 2008. Close planted, spur pruned, and in need of a little TLC, the wines produced from this vineyard were initially tannic. Over the years Woodlands converted the plots to cane pruning to soften the tannins and create a more balanced canopy and fruit set. The Cabernet Sauvignon was planted in 2009, and these vines were brought up cane pruned and unirrigated. It took them longer to produce, but the fruit that arrived was fantastic – powerful, dark and perfumed.
A blend of 56% Cabernet Sauvignon, 16% Malbec, 13% Merlot, 9% Petit Verdot and 6% Cabernet Franc matured for 16 months in French oak of which 35% was new. Displays fantastic depth of colour with an inky black core and a deep dark red black hue. Intense red to black currant and mulberry scents are followed by hints of black olive, lightly dusted vanillin cedar and spicy bay leaf notes. Very refined in its in feel the medium bodied palate serves up a savoury profile of red to black currant and mulberry fruits which are seamlessly integrated with vanillin cedar, dusty tobacco characters and infusions of bay leaf. Polished yet structured tannins with a slightly dryish finish. Concludes long and elegant.
Drink over the next 8-10 years.
Cabernet sauvignon takes the lead (56%), with decent amounts of malbec and merlot plus petit verdot and cabernet franc. Excellent dark purple-garnet; expect blackberries and mulberries, hints of spices and rosemary and while the oak (17 months in barrel, 30% new) adds to the flavour profile, it'll continue to melt into the wine, now a touch drying on the finish. Plenty of juicy fruit though across the fuller-bodied palate. It's not a big wine just neatly composed. Drink by 2030.
Jane Faulkner – James Halliday’s The Wine Companion
A complex blend of earthy, forest-wood and leafy aromas here with dark plums, cherries, dried blackcurrants and a herbal edge. The palate has such smoothly delivered, concentrated dark-berry flavors, layered with spiced currants, chocolate and plums. Great depth and power here. A blend of 56% cabernet sauvignon, 16% malbec, 13% merlot, 9% petit verdot and 6% cabernet franc. Drink or hold. Screw cap.
Deep, vivid ruby. Incisive red and black currant and cherry pit scents, along with suggestions of pipe tobacco, vanilla, smoky minerals and cracked pepper. Sappy and penetrating on the palate, offering bitter cherry, dark berry, licorice and succulent herb flavors that slowly turn sweeter as the wine opens up. Conveys a suave blend of depth and liveliness and finishes extremely long and smoky, with smooth tannins adding discreet grip. In the context of high-end Australian red wine, this one delivers remarkable value. One-third new French oak. Drink 2023-2033.
Josh Raynolds - Vinous