Still has excellent crimson-purple colour; has spent close on 3 years making its way into bottle, an especially long time for a blend such as this, but it clearly needed it; there is a complex interplay between cedar, cigar box, blackcurrant, dried herbs and a persistent tattoo of fine-grained tannins on the very long palate.
Whalebone Vineyard Latest Reviews
2013 Tapanappa Tiers Vineyard Chardonnay
A refined and subtle Chardonnay, the elegance of this wine is reminiscent of the great examples found in Burgundy. With stone fruit and melon on the nose, it has a crisp, dry finish that is both a little nutty and pleasantly savory.
2010 Tapanappa Whalebone Vineyard Cabernet Shiraz
Dark and brooding, there’s a powerful ripe-plum scent to this wine. Cabernet can be a bit hollow on its own and the Shiraz adds a little spice and improves the texture. There’s sweet fruit but the overall impression is one of a saline dryness.
appealed to Bennie. "A pretty but rich perfume of stewed fruits, plum and prunes with some cinnamon and mara- schino cherry," he said. "A fleshy palate with ample dark fruits and tinged with choc-mint flavour. Chalky tannins, finishes fresh and peppery. It's a beefy expression of the varieties, but done well. Caillard concluded, "A substantial wine with a long way to go."
Very appealing red and dark fruit aromas combine with smoky, toasty savoury notes and hints of dried herbs. Complex, subtly powerful with smooth, effortless tannins. Impressive.
Medium to deep red colour, with a trace of purple; the aromas are minty and fresh, with raspberry and dried-herb undercurrents. The palate is very soft, the tannins almost fluffy in texture, and the wine is starting to show the positive softening and mellowing effects of a little time under cork. The finish powers on and on and is clean and balanced, with ample soft tannins. Very good indeed.
Drink: 2014 - 2032
Holding its vivid colour in impressive fashion; if the late Len Evans were alive, he would be crowing loudly at Croser, pointing to the way this blend works so synergistically; the tapestry of predominantly black fruits has shafts of red coming through to shine a light on the way the ripe, but fine, tannins form a pattern through the fruit profile. Most striking is the effortless way the wine imparts the vast amount of flavour it has.
Drink By: 2040
Bright, youthful crimson; the bouquet is particularly fragrant, with red fruits, rose petal and cedar aromas; the palate moves into another gear, with intensely flavoured redcurrant, cigar box and a hint of earth ex the oak; the length and persistence of the palate and its aftertaste are striking.
Rating: 97 points
Drink By: 2035
A 64/36% blend matured for 22 months in 70% new French oak. Bright, light hue, still youthful; a complex wine from start to finish, the bouquet expressive, the medium-bodied palate with many messages of savoury red fruits, black olive and briar, corralled by fine, but persistent, tannins.
Drink by 2024
A trio of reviews from Jancis Robinson
Tapanappa, Whalebone Vineyard 2009 Wrattonbully, 16.5+
“Mid blackish ruby. Firm and meaty on the nose. Actually it does not taste dominated by Cabernet. Subtle and appetising. Still with tannins in evidence but very fine textured and warming but certainly not hot on the finish. Cries out for food. Clearly made with minimal additions. Long and vibrant. Still quite young and earthy.”
Tapanappa, Whalebone Vineyard Merlot/Cabernet Franc 2009 Wrattonbully, 17
“Bright ruby red. Subtle, savoury, earthy notes. Really very restrained for an Australian red! Perhaps the slightest of minty hints? Very cool, sophisticated, dry finish. Super-appetising and quite youthful. Some palates may even criticise it for being too light. Lots more still to come. Hint of tarmacadam on the finish.”
Tapanappa is a venture between Brian Croser, Bollinger and Chateau Lynch Bages in Bordeaux. Six hundred and eighty dozen of this 84/16 blend of cabernet sauvignon and shiraz were made. It drinks beautifully now, with layered flavours of cassis, violets, floral blueberry, blackberry, mulberry and cedar-like oak. Medium-bodied, and spritely through the mouth, there’s rich, fruit-driven concentration. Fine-grained tannins provide a firm grip, and loads of length.
5 out of 5