Cape Mentelle takes a minimal approach towards this classic Margaret River blend. The aim is to preserve as much fruit intensity and regional character as possible, whilst providing a full flavoured distinctive white wine. The style accentuates the fresh fruit characters of both varieties with the added complexity and palate weight offered by a small portion of barrel fermentation.
The fruit comes from the perfectly suited cooler southern half of the Margaret River region, from their three vineyards of the Wallcliffe-Trinders, Crossroads and Chapman Brook. The typical soils of these vineyards are geologically ancient, free draining, sandy loams with a high percentage of lateritic gravel. The vines are vertically trained, spur or cane pruned and canopy manipulations are frequent to allow good air flow and dappled sunlight on the fruit.
When harvesting sauvignon blanc and semillon the emphasis is placed on capturing vibrant fresh flavours with clean acidity. Fruit is harvested at night to take advantage of the cooler temperatures. Extended fermentation takes place at very low temperature in stainless steel tanks with about 8% of the blend fermented in new oak barriques. The 2016 blend was assembled after four months on lees; the team decided to preserve the exceptional vinosity and perfect texture by bottling the wine unfined in July 2016.
The nose on this wine has varietal sauvignon notes revolving around cassis buds, juniper berries and cracked black pepper. It then opens to complex fruit ranging from zesty white grapefruit to hints of lychees, lifted by ethereal floral notes of jasmine and passion fruit flower. The palate is juicy clean, slightly saline, on notes of passionfruit and citrus. The fresh pithy acidity and mineral character, reminiscent of fine absinthe, fresh ginger and gentian bitters give the wine a lot of vinosity and personality, well balanced by the honey notes and creamy texture of the semillon and showing exceptional length.
This wine goes well with crab cakes, fresh oysters au naturel and warm bruschetta with fresh buffalo mozzarella amongst many other dishes. Because of the wine's strong personality, it will allow a bold marriage with cheeses, especially well-aged, slightly crystallized ones such as a mature Parmigiano-Reggiano.
Pale yellow with green tints, lemon rinds, herbs and honey aromas. Citrus and apricot flavours followed by vanilla flavours from barrel maturation. Creamy and lingering palate.
Very fruity Sauvignon nose at first, followed by a second wave of rounder Sémillon aromas.On the palate the wine is fresh with a fairly lively attack, becoming more rounded on the finish.The woody notes are not dominant and leave the wine its"freedom of expression".
Bright straw in colour with a youthful green tinge. Tropical fruit flavours burst from the glass with subtle citrus and herbaecous notes in support. The palate is fresh and lively with ripe tropical fruit flavours and zesty citrus acidity.
An equal blend of Chenin Blanc and Semillon with pale colour and green tints. Grassy overtones with tropical fruit and a touch of heather. Voluptuous palate of peach, apricot and juicy citrus fruit. Medium weight with clean, crisp persistent finish.
Awarded 95 points and rare Outstanding status by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their October 2017 edition article on South America's Top Ten Winemakers (see blue link below).
Matias Riccitelli is the son of renowned winemaker Jorge Riccitelli. Having worked at some of the most prestigious wineries in Argentina and several vintages around the world, Matias used his experience, knowledge and passion and set up his own winery in 2009. His vineyards cover 50 hectares located in three selected sites within the premium growing region of Lujan de Cuyo, Mendoza. This is a young and dynamic project in which Matias is seeking to express the full potential of Argentine terroir.
This Semillon was sourced from forgotten vines that are over 50 years old. These old vineyards are located in Río Negro in Patagonia, at an altitude of 400 metres above sea level on the 39° latitude south. Sunlight exposure is more intense than northern areas, but at this latitude the nights are much colder. This daily diurnal temperature range is excellent for the production of quality grapes; the nightly cooling-off extends the ripening period, allowing the grapes to develop rich varietal characteristics while retaining balancing acidity.
100% Semillon. The grapes were harvested at perfect maturity levels and then underwent a skin maceration of 12 hours at 10°C. Fermentation took place at temperatures of between 14 to16°C. Maturation lasted for eight months with 50% aged in French oak barrels and 50% in small concrete eggs.
It has all the seriousness, subtleness, elegance and nuances that old Semillon is capable of. This is not explosive or showy, it's a little restrained. A Semillon that is beautifully textured with great acidity and a long, moreish finish.