Men­telle event a tasty prospect

Western Suburbs Weekly - - Wine - with John Jens

IN the wine world, if the facts were pub­lished, the sta­tus of WA’s caber­net sauvi­gnons would al­ready have reached leg­endary sta­tus.

In 2015, WA won five of the seven cap­i­tal city wine show Best Caber­net tro­phies.

For per­spec­tive, our state has only 4 per cent of Aus­tralia’s caber­net sauvi­gnon and mer­lot.

This is not the sta­tis­ti­cal anom­aly it may sound, yet the west also gained five of the seven tro­phies in each of 2014, 2013 and 2010.

This brings us to David Hohnen and Cape Men­telle’s first vi­sion­ary 20 wine In­ter­na­tional Caber­net Tast­ing in Mar­garet River’s pi­o­neer­ing days in 1982.

The now an­nual event has be­come an Aus­tralia-wide wine in­dus­try institution.

Each year, 100 of Aus­tralia and the world’s lead­ing wine lovers, sell­ers and writ­ers de­scend on Cape Men­telle for the lat­est of the win­ery’s 20 wine in­ter­na­tional caber­net sauvi­gnon cel­e­bra­tions.

Three of the world’s most fa­mous wine scribes, James Suck­ling, Ch’ng Poh Tiong and Lisa Per­rotti-Brown, flew in for this year’s tast­ing of the 2012 vin­tage.

Per­rotti-Brown picked two West Aus­tralians – the Wood­lands Thomas caber­net sauvi­gnon (18.9pts) and the Houghton Jack Mann caber­net (18.9) – among her four high­est pointed wines.

That’s not bad when they are com­pared with wines such as Chateau Cos d’Es­tour­nel (19), Leoville Las Cases (18.7), Lafite and La Mis­sion Haut Brion (19.2) from Bordeaux, and Or­nel­laia (19) and Sas­si­caia (18.3) from Tus­cany in the very best of the 20.

And the host, 2012 Cape Men­telle caber­net sauvi­gnon?

It re­ceived 18.8 points on my card and was one of the very best of the wines.

Soft, round, juicy, sup­ple and long with dry edges, hints of savoury and great length. It has qual­ity struc­tur­ing tan­nins un­til the end, making it a lovely wine.

The sheer qual­ity of the Cape Men­telle caber­nets, with­out ex­cep­tion, since the 2008 vin­tage is breath­tak­ing.

Th­ese are great wines and while the Men­telle team be­lieve that the 2012 is the finest, my points still whis­per “the 2011”.

Preparing for this year’s tast­ing at Cape Men­telle.

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