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Established in 1977 by Irishman Dr John Lagan, the Xanadu vineyards now owned by the Rathbone family continue to flourish in a near-perfect viticultural environment that inspired Dr Lagan; rich free draining gravel soils; an abundant water supply and a unique maritime climate. Winemaker Glenn Goodall mirrors the original vision; to produce premium wines that reflect the true character of the region in synergy with the environment and vineyards. 

The wine exhibits vibrant, characteristic aromas of cassis, berry fruits, and dark Satsuma plums entwined with hints of bay leaf and spicy, toasty oak. The generous palate is packed full of ripe forest fruits, jubey blackcurrant pastilles and chocolate characters. Full bodied, the attractive fleshy fruits fit into a structure supported by supple tannins, a solid acid backbone and a persistent berry fruit finish.

91% cabernet sauvignon, 5% malbec, 4% petit verdot, crushed and destemmed, static and open fermenters, 33% undergoing post-ferment maceration for 4 weeks, matured for 14 months in French oak (40% new) before blending. One of six '14 Xanadu cabernets, you really need to keep your wits about you. Great colour is no surprise, nor is the majesty of the cassis-filled bouquet and palate. While there is an element of barrel selection (and trickle down of lesser barrels, and possible promotion) each wine does have its own personality, part shaped by the vineyard, part in the winery. Here the extended maceration has refined the tannins without stripping the fruit. Drink to: 2040; Price: $37.00; Date Tasted: Jan 2017; Alcohol: 14%; Rating: 96 Points & Special Value Star; James Halliday; James Halliday Wine Companion

 

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