WA cabernets step up
By John Jens
IT is not only WA's greatest and most expensive cabernets that dominate the national capital wine show trophy awards and key national reviewer's ratings, there are marvellous local examples in every price range.
When WA cabernet dominance is discussed in the east, it is often explained by mentioning that this state has had an unbroken series of very good vintages since 2007.
South Australia had a great and revitalising cabernet vintage in 2010 but now, to add to the east's marketing woes, many of WA's winemakers have been saying for two years that the 2012 cabernet vintage is WA's best ever.
These are two of 2012's finest recent cabernet releases.
WA cebernets at under $20 - and occasionally under $15.
Houghton Crofters Cabernet Sauvignon 2012, Frankland River.
The recent releases from Houghton wines confirm that they are among the great value for money wine producers in the country - in all price ranges.
This is just a delicious riot of red and black berried flavours that has been crafted for crowd pleasing early drinking. It is fruit driven, soft gentle and appealing.
The earlier youthful vibrancy is gradually retreating and this is leaving a more serious mouthful of long, classy and satisfying quality Frankland River flavours.
Hard to beat at the price.
17.9 points $17.95. Perhpas below $15 on special.
WA cabernets at under $30 - and occasionally under $22 - for a serious cabernet.
Howard Park Miamup Cabernet Sauvignon 2012.
This typifies the results from the culmination of the modern changes in red wine fruit selection and winemaking.
This is a serious wine in terms of both fruit quality and winemaking and, as such, has all it needs to develop for far more than 10 years. Despite this, while it is full, dense and long, this cabernet is soft, approachable and beautifully balanced for relaxing drinking right now.
RRP is just $28 and it can be found at well under $25