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Whalebone Vineyard Latest Reviews

Wine Companion 2021

Author: 
James Halliday
Source: 
Halliday Wine Companion 2021
Review Date: 
August 2020

Eden Valley Riesling 2018
Founded on the philosophy of fealty to distinguished single sites, this juicy riesling hails from the meagre granitic souls of the 50yo Bartholomeus Vineyard. Pink grapefruit pulp, bath salts and lemon rind notes cascade along a gentle phenolic waft and juicy acid rails. This is ripe and luscious, eschewing contemporary trends toward earlier harvest windows and brittle acidity. At once pointed and richly flavoured. Finessed, too, while boasting a real propulsion of flavours and textures. Mouthfilling, gratifying and very long.
95 points (Gold)

Piccadilly Valley Chardonnay 2018
The warm season is certainly reflected in this wine, with honey, fig and even brulee, all finely balanced by citrussy acidity. Enjoyable drink now style.
94 points (Silver)

"We have a wine of swagger here, a bold wine but a vital wine" - 2016 Cabernet Franc Merlot

Author: 
Campbell Mattinson
Source: 
The Wine Front
Review Date: 
June 2020

Merlot makes up 44% of the wine, while cabernet franc is 56%. Always good to see franc holding sway.
When I first tasted this I thought there was too much bubble-gum oak, and for some people there probably is, but as it breathes dust and pure blackcurrant flavours burst forward as rugged, muscular tannin rumbles into place. We have a wine of swagger here, a bold wine but a vital one, with choc-mint characters aplenty along with gravel, seaweed and red licorice. It’s a wine of wealth. It takes its alcohol in its stride. It has quite a run ahead of it.
94 points

"Needs time" - 2016 Whalebone Cabernet Franc Merlot

Author: 
Nick Butler
Source: 
The Real Review
Review Date: 
March 2020

Bright and deep ruby-red colour. Loads of toasty oak and green rhubarb, eucalyptus and red licorice. Ripe red strawberries and cranberries wrestle with ambitious tannins and dried herb sinew. Tannins are chalky and ripe. It's a bit of an assault on the senses right now. Needs time and air to soften its stance
92 points

"Sensational wine" - 2016 Whalebone Cabernet Shiraz

Author: 
Nick Butler
Source: 
The Real Review
Review Date: 
March 2020

Black olive hue with red edges. So many moving parts to the bouquet: cedar, dark soy, tapenade, mixed red and black berries, oak is definitely firm. An opulent first sip; ripe blackberries and raspberries meld beautifully with licorice and softer plum notes. Time in the bottle has softened some edges. This is right in the slot - tannins in harmony. Sensational wine
95 points

Wine Companion 2020

Author: 
James Halliday
Source: 
Halliday Wine Companion 2020
Review Date: 
August 2019

Tiers Vineyard Chardonnay 2017
This is the oldest of the three Tiers Vineyard blocks, with 2ha planted in '70 of what Croser calls the OF clones, which has a history to make Conan Doyle happy. It's a Californian clone that was eradicated there because of leaf roll virus - the cuttings were not infected when Croser brought them to Australia. The vinification was the same as for the 1.5m, but this is decidedly more complex than its sibling, confidently filling the mouth with balanced fruit flavours.
96 points (2031)

"The wine is rich and soft" - 2015 Whalebone Cabernet Shiraz

Author: 
Huon Hooke
Source: 
The Real Review
Review Date: 
May 2019

Deep, dark colour with a subtle purple trace, and the bouquet is earthy, woodsy, savoury and dry. The wine is rich and soft and ample, as well as savoury and strong on drying, powdery tannins. Oak is sitting on the wine somewhat; it may just need more time to emerge. The fruit is certainly concealed at this stage.

90 points

"It's big, round and fruit sweet, with plenty of supple tannin" - 2015 Whalebone Merlot Cabernet Franc

Author: 
Huon Hooke
Source: 
The Real Review
Review Date: 
May 2019

Deep, rich red with a tinge of brick-red in the colour, the bouquet strong on eucalyptus with menthol and linament notes. It's full-
bodied and rich, fleshy and almost opulent in the mouth, the palate delivering intense Campari-like bitter- herb flavours. It's big, round
and fruit-sweet, with plenty of supple tannin. (69% merlot, 31% cabernet franc)

90 points

"A wine of Terroir" - 2015 Whalebone Merlot Cabernet Franc

Author: 
Stuart Robinson
Source: 
The Vinsomniac
Review Date: 
May 2019

Perenially exemplary Australian take on a classic right-bank (Bordeaux) blend.

Quite sullen, sitting there under a heavy oak shroud. There are lighter elements of spice and toast in that oak frame, slowly lifting to reveal glimpses of blackberry, tobacco, more seasoning.

Darker manifestation altogether, meaty and with a bitter chocolate element. It sits fine on the palate, still delicate - even for it sub 15% stature - subtle hints of vanilla, from the 50% new French oak.

Fine tannins linger, but it certainly is a wine of terroir from a warmer and drier vintage. It needs some time for the wine to settle further into itself, the gentle length an indication of that which will reward the patient.

92 points

"Extreme depth of flavour" - 2015 Whalebone Cabernet Shiraz

Author: 
Toni Paterson
Source: 
The Real Review
Review Date: 
April 2019

A delicious, well-made wine with ripe, vibrant fruit. What sets this wine apart from others is the extreme depth of flavour. I enjoy the energy of the mulberry and plummy fruit, as well as the gentle chocolatey richness. Only 320 dozen produced

94 points

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