2021 Joshua Cooper Shays Flat Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon
Described by wine commentator Mike Bennie as "one of Australia’s brightest young winemakers”, Joshua Cooper is steadily forging a reputation for thoughtful, elegant, and confident wines from grapes grown in Macedon and surrounds.
Shay’s Flat is organic farmed. Cabernet quickly becoming the metier of Josh Cooper, despite the prowess with chardonnay and pinot noir. And my, does he consume a lot of (young and old) Claret in his spare time. Alongside his stamp collection and his tartan elbow patch blazers.
This has energy and sleekness. A firm and tightly wound cabernet of cassis and currants, liquorice, brined black olive and autumnal leaf characters. Flavours and aromas are similar here. Ultra fine, al dente tannins are slippery then build into a lingering, generous pucker. While fruit feels ripe and rich it’s settled into strong, minerally sluices and the wine finishes mouth-watering and grippy at once. This is very good. Drink 2022 - 2035+
Mike Bennie - The Wine Front (September 2022)
This has aromas of mulberries, wild blackberries, raspberries, licorice and sweet basil. Wonderfully fresh and crunchy, with fine-grained tannins and swathes of bright red berry fruit. Drink or hold.
Joshua Cooper is a producer whose wines I buy in my spare time and drink when I'm not working. The wines are detailed and interesting, and that's something I really value, along with distinction, specificity, place and identity. So, the 2021 Shay's Flat Cabernet Sauvignon leads with a leafy, cassis-riddled nose, which is brambly and spiced, with lotus leaf/humidor (to quote a friend), star anise, mountain herbs, coal dust, salted licorice, ash/embers and blackberries. In the mouth, the tannins are svelte and streamlined—they shape the fruit but it's an invisible caress—and their finesse is like finely milled powder. While tasting, the rockiness of the place evokes earth and minerals in the mind. The cool part about this wine is its austerity of line and structure: it packs flavor and complexity and freshness into a fine-boned package. It's awesome. Thrilling, actually. Drink 2022 - 2037.
Erin Larkin - Robert Parker's Wine Advocate