2019 Hickinbotham The Nest Cabernet Franc

Highly Rated
This may be the best varietal Cabernet Franc released in Australia this year. 96 Points Halliday Wine Companion.

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Description

Winemaker Chris Carpenter's inspiration for this single varietal release of Cabernet Franc is none other than the Bordeaux icon, Cheval Blanc.

Carpenter sees the depth and power of Bordeaux here, albeit through the silky McLaren Vale viel. It's a devastatingly smooth and seductive wine with perfectly ripe blackcurrant, boysenberry, violet and green leaf characters in spades.

Where so many modern Australian Cabernet Franc are built in the more youthful, energetic style reminiscent of the Loire Valley, this is a dead-serious cellaring option and arguably one of the most impressive examples of the variety ever produced in this country.

Buy it. Drink it. Savour it. Watch it unfurl over the coming decades. This is as good as Cabernet Franc gets in this country.

A pure Cabernet Franc, it expresses true varietal characteristics of red currant, red berry and leafy, bracken notes. The palate has a compact style with finely compressed tannins that create a smooth, almost polished texture. The enduring freshness, intensity and elegance of this wine are the defining characters.

96 Points - "Hand picked 22nd March. Destemmed and whole-berry sorted, gentle crush. Cold soak and wild ferment. Pumped over daily, 15 days on skins. Basket pressed with light pressings included with free-run juice. Racked and returned twice during 15 months' maturation in fine-grained French oak (50% new). The quality of fruit, tannic precision and apposite application of oak under this banner are unequalled in Australia. Nobody else gets it quite as right. The budget and gear help, yet it is the viticulture and sites that are the foundation for everything else. Franc from a warm place, salvaging its sappy cavalcade of tannin, crunch and floral lift. Redcurrant, spearmint and chilli powder lace a finely tuned finish marked by a flourish of garden herb. Kerpow!" - Ned Goodwin (Halliday Wine Companion)

93 Points - "Strong fruit, strong tannin and strong oak. It's balanced within its own world but this is a heavy hitter. A big serve of resiny vanilla, mint, chocolate, steel and redcurrant, with plum notes drenching the palate. Dry, rusty herbs, the leftovers from a couple of summers ago combine with florals, old too, dried too. Less oak would have been good but this is a wine set up to age. Strong arms, this one. Ropes of tannin territory." - Campbell Mattinson (The Wine Front)

Customer Reviews

Hickinbotham

The Hickinbotham vineyard is somewhat of a legend amongst the Australian winemaking community.

Planted in 1971 in the Clarendon region, fruit from this important site has contributed to some of the most iconic wines in Australia's history, including Penfold's Grange, Eileen Hardy and Clarendon Hills.

Recently, the vineyard has undergone somewhat of a renaissance after being purchased by American wine juggernaut, the Jackson family, and being placed into the winemaking care of Yangarra winemaker Peter Fraser and respected American winemaker, Chris Carpenter.

These are elite premium wines that are made limited quantities and are built to mature gracefully. The ultimate addition to any serious collector's cellar.

Michael Lane, Peter Fraser & Chris Carpenter Hickinbotham Vineyard

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