Although Pinot Noir and Chardonnay are front and foremost in perceptions of the winemaking strengths of the Yarra Valley, it is unquestionably Cabernet Sauvignon and its interpretations that have been the historical mainstay of the region.
Indeed, many of the founders of the Yarra Valley’s vinous revival in the late 1960s and early 1970s chose the cultivation of Cabernet Sauvignon as their raison d’etre for undertaking the pursuit of the production of cool climate, world-class wines.
Reflective of where it is grown, Cabernet Sauvignon has the potential to be one of the heavier types of red wines. However, when grown on suitable sites in the tempered conditions of cooler climates and made stylistically with an eye to accentuating its strengths, Cabernet Sauvignon can achieve beautiful heights of intensity, characterful presence and restrained.
The Yarra Valley has proven innumerable times that Cabernet Sauvignon has ever more regional compatibility and, when done right, it is arguably responsible for some of the greatest wines in the world.
“To fully realise the true beauty of Cabernet Sauvignon and capture its intrinsic regality and charm, you need to feature the leafy element and you must have herbaceous notes in there to faithfully represent the variety,” says winemaker Paul Bridgeman.
“It means it’s in the perfect place, delivering power with precision, confidence with restraint, all contained within a medium-bodied framework.”
Levantine Hill Cabernet Sauvignon Wines
“2015 and 2017 were among the top three vintages of the decade in the Yarra Valley, really amplifying the cooler flavours and components of the wines and are a must for any wine lover’s cellar,” says Bridgeman.
Samantha’s Paddock is known as the “impossible wine” because of the steepness of the land from which its fruit is grown and the presence of underground, rocky seams and outcrops that were thought to be insurmountable.
In keeping with the traditional varieties of Bordeaux, this wine is predominantly Cabernet Sauvignon based, and blended with Merlot, Malbec, Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot.
“It is medium-bodied but has a great amount of presence and drive, and the tannin structure slowly builds,” says Bridgeman.
“It is made like a traditional Claret and it’s a real sum of the parts wine. We pick and make all of the individual components separately and blend them towards the end to get the right balance. We get some amazing intensity and concentration from the vineyard being planted into a rockface.”
“This wine makes a statement.”
The 2015 Samantha’s Paddock pairs perfectly with slow roasted lamb shoulder with fennel and pink pepper. The recipe from our Head Chef is included with all orders, along with tasting notes and a tutored tasting video.
2017 Estate Cabernet Sauvignon
Our Estate Cabernet Sauvignon is also made to a classic Claret style with fruit grown on our Maroondah Highway Vineyard.
“It’s not meant to be alcohol heavy,” says Bridgeman. “It’s about the medium-body and the fine line. We’ve done a line-up of the 2017 reds and this one, at this stage, is so intense and ready-to-go.”
With 5% Merlot and 2% Petit Verdot included at blending for added mid-palate weight and vibrancy, the resulting wine is a blend of 11 individual batches sourced from our Maroondah Highway Vineyard. It has an uncommon mix of red and black fruits which is testament to the different aspects of our vineyard planting and our philosophy of only picking the fruit when it is ready and ripened.
“You get a range of fruit characters which is something I find very appealing and it has signature leafiness to it which has to be in Cabernet Sauvignon to truly represent the variety. This is what we would love Yarra Valley to be perceived as in terms of Cabernet Sauvignon.”
The 2017 Estate Cabernet Sauvignon pairs perfectly with slow roasted beef rib with bone marrow sauce. The recipe from our Head Chef is included with all orders, along with tasting notes and a tutored tasting video.