Wednesday, July 25, 2012

2008 Houghton Jack Mann Cabernet Sauvignon (Frankland River)


An historic Australian winery, producing a Cabernet named after one of the legends of Australian wine, from one of Australia’s grand cru’s. The Houghton Jack Mann Cabernet Sauvignon from the Justin Vineyard appeals to my love of history, love of Cabernet, and a desire to see Australia produce great wines from great sites.

Unfortunately, it’s unclear what the future of this iconic wine is. Houghton (Accolade wines) will no longer lease the Justin Vineyard. Instead it is now being leased by Robert Oatley and overseen by Larry Cherubino. Apparently Houghton will still look to take the same parcels of fruit from the 80 hectare vineyard for this wine, but in losing control it undoubtedly casts some doubt as to the quality of fruit that will grace Jack Mann. As such, for those that find this wine as compelling as I do, and are willing to fork out the cash for it, it’s probably worth snapping this and the next couple of vintages up (I think the last vintage they had control was 2011).

The first time I tried the 2008 was at a tasting 18 months ago, and I was blown away by the quality of the wine. Drinking it a few weeks back, it seemed to have closed down somewhat, though the quality was still evident.

This is a wine that doesn’t lack for fruit or power. A beautiful depth of blackcurrant fruit is complimented by cabernet leafiness, some eucalypt, and a hint of earthiness. Oak is present but of high quality. There is plenty of latent complexity here, but it's not really strutting its stuff just at the moment. Fine but persistent tannins. Great length. Not for now, but to be had as a 10 year old, and then for many years after. 4 Stars ++

Rated:
++


RRP: $110 (can be found around the traps for about $85)
ABV: 14%
Closure: Screwcap
Website: http://www.houghton-wines.com/



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