It's a single-block wine from Block 3 of Punt Road’s Napoleone Vineyard, planted in 1987. The secret with the wine is aqueous maceration - doing the grunt work in pumpovers and plunges during cold soak and at the start of fermentation. Post ferment, the wine is pressed earlier than Punt Road's neighbours. Once again this is nicely balanced, with a beautiful seam of blackcurrant and tight-grained oak. The tannins are brasher in 2016, but the boldness of the wine suits this. "It’s safe to say the this wine is the best of all the wines we made in 2016," says Tim Shand. "Cabernet doesn’t mind a bit of heat, and with careful management the fruit freshness and vitality was retained on the vine. The hallmark of age-worthy reds from the 2016 Yarra vintage will be whether they achieve depth whilst maintaining freshness."
The nose is loaded with fruit: redcurrants, plum and blackcurrant. It's highly floral, too, with a clutch of herbs and a touch of classy oak, too. You're set up to expect soft fruit and that's what you get; it's fleshy and pretty upfront. Varietal signatures come through on the back palate and finish, with blackcurrant, cedar, coffee and bitter chocolate notes. A juicy, balanced and very drinkable Cabernet. - Ed Merrison, CellarHand