95 Points - Erin Larkin
Balnaves is a family owned wine company in the heart of the famous Coonawarra Terra Rossa strip. Since the planting of the first 5 hectares of vines in 1976, the vineyard has grown steadily and now covers a total of 56 hectares of Coonawarra Terra Rossa soil.
The team at Balnaves always produce outstanding Coonawarra Cabernet Sauvignon and the 2019 vintage is another impressive offering. Deep rich red in colour; the nose is perfumed with aromas of pure cassis, violets, blackberry and graphite combined with fine mocha-coffee French oak. The palate is structured and elegant with ripe cassis fruit and a fine tannin finish - another top class Coonawarra Cabernet from the Balnaves.
"95 Points. Fruit from the Dead Morris and Old Paulownia blocks. Cabernet co-fermented with 4.8% petit verdot. Matured for 18 months in French oak (52% new). The indefatigable fruit here is a solid match for the oak – at no point does it wither beneath the weight of it. This is a classically styled, almost old-school cabernet, but it has been handled with class. That fruit, as mentioned, is glorious. A beautiful wine which will no doubt age gracefully. 14.5% alc. Screwcap. Drink: 2022 - 2037"- Erin Larkin, winecompanion.com.au.
The vineyard is divided into small blocks of between one and two hectares, which take into account depth of soil, trellis design, vine clone and row direction. The quality of wine produced from these small blocks is evaluated each year and recorded. This practice proves the validity of the French concept of "terrior" or the effect that microclimate; geological features and other factors have on the quality of the wine produced. Such effects are clearly seen in the small Balnaves vineyard at Coonawarra.
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