Wine industry pioneer David Hohnen and brothers Mark and Giles established Cape Mentelle Vineyards in 1970. The Cape Mentelle journey started small with just 16 hectares of vines planted on what is now referred to as the ‘Wallcliffe Vineyard’. In the early years David Hohnen experimented with grape varieties including shiraz, cabernet, zinfandel, sauvignon blanc and semillon. Many of these original plantings are the source of the distinctive wines that have come to characterise Cape Mentelle. The winery’s flagship Cabernet Sauvignon is sourced primarily from the original Wallcliffe Vineyard.
Cape Mentelle unashamedly draw inspiration from the great wines of the world; this is reflected in the techniques employed in the vineyard as they aim to produce wines that capture a unique sense of place in every bottle. These characteristics are defined by the pristine coastal location, unique soils and 40 years of viticultural history.
Cape Mentelle's philosophy extends beyond the glass as they endeavour to create a legacy of sustainability and longevity. Constantly improving the potential of their vineyards and local environments, they are committed to paving the way for the next generation to continue the pursuit of crafting Australia's definitive wine styles.
VARIETAL: Cabernet Sauvignon
CELLARING: This wine has such a structure and intensity that it can be cellared for up to 20-30 years
BLEND: Cabernet Sauvignon 85%, Merlot 9%, Petit Verdot 3%, Shiraz 3%
ANALYSIS: 13.7% alcohol, 5.62 g/l total acidity, 3.69 pH
APPEARANCE: Deep red garnet
THE VINEYARD: Sourced from our vineyards and a few selected partner growers in Margaret River. This area exhibits the classic gravelly lateritic soils that drain to the west and the microclimate is strongly influenced by the Indian ocean only 5 km away. These vineyards are manually cane pruned, meticulously treated as individual vines throughout the season and hand harvested in 6.5Kg crates that allow each section to be handled with all the particular care it deserves
WINEMAKING: After destemming, individual berry sorting and light crushing, individual vineyard batches were fermented on skins for up to 70 days. Ferment management is decided every day by tasting and follows no recipe. At the desired balance of fruit and tannin extraction, each batch was gently basket pressed, with harder pressings kept aside. The individual parcels were racked to oak following pressing for malolactic fermentation. The wines were matured with minimal rackings for 18 to 20 months (depending on batches) in selected bordeaux-shaped barrels of which about 55% were new. The wine is left unfined and undergoes only minimal polishing filtration
NOSE: A rush of intense ripe red fruits comes first to the nose with expressive notes of dark cherry, strawberry and Satsuma plum. The bouquet is then completed with aromas of blond caramel, vanilla and peppercorns, along with subtle hints of smoky oak and cocoa nibs
FOOD PAIRING NOTES: We recommend lean meat: beef tartare, venison carpaccio. It is also an excellent match with oyster mushrooms marinated in truffle butter or to accompany a delicious chocolate mud cake
PALATE: A bright attack of ripe plums, black and red cherry leading to delicate notes of smoky oak and liquorice and hints of wild game and forest floor. The structural and fine tannins combined with a well-balanced acidity provide a beautiful mouthfeel
THE SEASON: After a sunny and mild September 2014, Margaret River experienced a cool spring all the way to the year end. 2015 brought the driest January on record, on par with 2008 and concluded with some hot days in the mid 30s during the last week. The nights remained cool through summer, favouring delicate floral and red fruit flavours especially