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1996 Wendouree Cabernet Malbec

1996 Wendouree Cabernet Malbec

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From a great vintage, Wendouree Cabernet Malbec

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  • Region - Clare Valley
  • Bottle Size - 750ml standard bottle
  • Closure - Cork
  • Provenance - Professional Cellar
  • Wine Level - into the neck
  • Vintage Rating - 9/10

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Wendouree was established in 1893 by Alfred Percy Birks towards the northern end of the Clare Valley in South Australia and is one of the oldest operational wineries in Australia. Much of the original vineyard, winery and even some of the original  winemaking equipment are still in service. The soils are red-brown chocolaty loams over limestone, allowing excellent drainage. The climate is essentially continental with hot summers and cool/cold winters. The vineyard has very old unirrigated plantings of Shiraz, Malbec, Mourvedre and Cabernet Sauvignon, many of them untrellised bush-vines 100 years old.  Lita and Tony Brady assumed management of Wendouree in 1974 after three years of commercial freefall. Over the ensuing years they have made The Wendouree Shiraz into one of Australia's iconic wines. Wendouree also produces ShirazMalbec, Shiraz-Mataro, Cabernet Sauvignon-Malbec and Cabernet Sauvignon. They are very muscular and powerful wines with vice-like tannins and require long-term ageing.

For many lovers of big Australian red wines the discussion begins and ends with Wendouree. Truly exceptionally cellar-worthy, these full bodied and gripping red wines are the result of extremely low yields from the very old, unirrigated vines of Shiraz, Malbec, Mataro (Mourvèdre), and Cabernet Sauvignon, many of them growing on untrellised bush-vines.

As remarkable as the wines are, even more remarkable are Tony and Lita Brady, who consider themselves the custodians of a priceless treasure: the 1914 stone winery, its original equipment, the time-honoured method of wine making and the time forgotten vineyard at Clare.

WENDOUREE Cabernet Malbec

"This mature dry grown vineyard with substantial plantings of century old vines lies on well draining red-brown chocolaty loams over shale. Yields are minute with very high concentration and seed content. This partly explains the “particularity” of the Wendouree style. The quality of the fruit is outstanding with incredible sugar/acidity/flavour balance. In many respects the Cabernet Malbec is an old fashioned wine, yet it articulates vineyard character and maintains an unbroken continuity of style rarely found on the contemporary wine scene. The Malbec component – which derives from four blocks planted between 1898 and 1960 – provides complexity and interest. This is a profoundly individual wine with intense bright fruit, underlying maturation notes and firm but pronounced vice-like  tannins structures." Andrew Caillard MW

Tony Brady, holds a degree in law and Lita Brady, a fully qualified winemaker (Charles Sturt University) left high powered
city careers to devote their lives to keeping Wendouree what it always has been: a place of honest, old fashioned, careful
and artisan wine making where no short cuts are taken, ever.


Wendouree Cabernet Malbec