2014 Vasse Felix Tom Cullity, Margaret River
80% Cabernet Sauvignon, 16% Malbec, 4% Petit Verdot
(Slightly more Cab than the 2013, less Malbec, the same PV)
100% basket pressed / 100% whole berry ferment / 100% wild yeast / 24 days on skins / French oak barriques 62% new, 38% 1-4 year old, 18 months / Unfined
“The red fruits shine here. This is incredible. Raspberry, pomegranate, red apple skins, pink peppercorns, hints of strawberry, blackcurrant, mulberry, seaweed/nori (an injection of iodine, beetroot). The tannins are polished, like whipped egg white: chewy and sumptuous. The flavours extend through the palate and into the length. Very very long. I can write long after it is gone. Alive. Energy. Doesn’t want to finish, it doesn’t want to let go. It lingers. Great depth of flavour. Effortlessly long. In fact… it needs the extra linger time just to make sure its covered all of its flavours and textures. Super fine, powerful, long, structured and delicate. Perfect.”
If this represents where Margaret River has come to, then we are indeed in a magnificent place.
To put this into perspective: Margaret River vintage charts are pretty bland – the range is very good to exceptional. There are ‘typical’ years, ‘plush’ years’, ‘leaner’ years, ‘warmer’ years… but they’re all good. They all age prodigiously. The 86’s are still alive and kicking: not bad for a wine region which at the time, was trailblazing towards a brave new wine world. In 2017, Margaret River celebrated its 50th year, and along with it, Vasse Felix, it’s 50th vintage. 2018 sees the release of the 2014 Tom Cullity. Perhaps one of the best cabernets to come out of Australia. Perfect. 99 points (or 19.5pts).
“A single-vineyard evolution of the estate’s previous icon red, the HEYTESBURY, named in recognition of our founder – Dr Tom Cullity. It descends from his original vines and is the pinnacle of Vasse Felix Cabernet Sauvignon”