A step in a new direction for Mr Barval Fine Wines, this wine is the coming together of 5 parcels of Cabernet Sauvignon from the Wilyabrup and Walcliffe sub-regions, luscious Malbec months in old vine Merlot from Wilyabrup. The fruit was hand harvested and fermented with wild vineyard yeasts, hand plunged and gently basket pressed. The wine was aged for 20 months in subtle French oak barriques, 25% of which were new, and bottled unfined, unfiltered and unadulterated. Elegant, pure and with great complexity, length and depth of palate, this wine reflects the cooler 2019 vintage. This wine will drink well immediately and will also reward carful cellaring for many years to come.
The Cabernet portion of this wine came from five select vineyard sites. Three of these lie in the real ‘Dress Circle’ of Margaret River viticulture in the heart of the Wilyabrup sub-region. This area of Margaret River has shown year after year that it can deliver consistently incredible fruit quality and the finest of our fine wines are produced from fruit grown here. The other two Cabernet vineyard blocks are located in the Walcliffe sub-region of Margaret River, with a strong northerly exposure and around 4km from the Indian Ocean overlooking the coastal end of the Margaret River itself. Perched high on this hillside, the vines grow in gravelly, well drained soil and experience fantastic exposure to the warm summer sunshine and regular, cooling sea breezes.
The Merlot portion of the blend is from a very special old vineyard. One of the oldest and most historic in the entire Margaret River district, this Wilyabrup site displays all of the most sought after vineyard characteristics. Of particular note is that the vines are old – around 46 years old and un-irrigated, which leads to production of a Merlot wine with amazing depth and complexity.
All of the grapes for this wine were handpicked into small 8kg crates.
Grapes were immediately transported back to the winery where they were gently de-stemmed and not crushed, directly into their small fermentation vessels. This allowed the ferment to start with what were almost totally unburst, undamaged individual berries. The wines were fermented in their separate batches utilising indigenous yeasts unique to each vineyard site.
The must underwent a slow, steady ferment with gentle hand plunging twice each day. The individual batches spent 14-22 days on skins after which the fruit was basket pressed into French oak barriques, with a small portion (19%) being new, and was left to complete malolactic fermentation in barrel utilising the activity of indigenous bacteria.
One day before bottling the wine was racked out of barrel to tank and was then bottled unfined and unfiltered.
The wine was left to mature for 21 months in barrel during which time it was and racked via gravity one time and topped regularly.