The weather has been a bit grim over the last week or so and the temperatures have certainly dipped. So with this in mind, I’ve selected a red for my Wine of the Week – Bentwing Coonawarra Merlot Malbec Cabernet Sauvignon 2011. Bit of a mouthful. Having said that, if the weather does perk up and you want to squeeze in another BBQ, it’ll perform admirably alongside some fancy burgers and marinated meat.
Coonawarra is a very special place, situated around 300km south of Adelaide. Its close proximity to the ocean lends a maritime edge to the climate, with a cool feel, somewhat comparable with France’s Bordeaux. So it comes as little surprise that Coonawarra is best known for the quality of its Cabernet Sauvignon. There is however enough varying soil types allowing growers the chance to work with a number of varieties. Best of the rest are Shiraz, Merlot, and on limestone spots Chardonnay and Riesling perform quite well.
This wine is finely structured and herbaceous with excellent balance. The big difference when comparing directly with Bordeaux is simply accessibility; how much easier it is to get into a young wine like the Bentwing from Coonawarra than equivalent quality offerings from Bordeaux.
On the nose you’ll find lovely elegant peppery, leafy notes that complement the rich dark fruit notes to perfection. The palate is full and round, yet most definitely tips its hat to European classics, (such is the delicate tannic structure). The finish is long and smooth and if you get chance to decant – I recommend you do – 30 minutes will be fine.