Rolf Binder - Halcyon Cabernet Merlot 2011Australian Red Wine
The Halcyon Cabernet Sauvignon Merlot is both soured from the Chri Ro Estate Vineyard and Western Ridge vineyards owned by Rolf Binder. The vintage produced average yields, and both varieties show strongly. The blend is 60% Cabernet Sauvignon and 40% Merlot.
The style of wine made is very much a full bodied rich dry red trying to show the strength and power of the Cabernet Sauvignon from the Barossa region, which when full phenologically ripe displays depth along with rich ripe tannins.
The fully ripe Merlot adds a softening to the wine which is aged in older oak to show the fruit of the wine.
The wine is made to show the flavours that the Barossa can give to these varieties.
To grow good Cabernet Sauvignon in the Barossa is somewhat difficult. Whereas with Shiraz and Grenache we look to slightly stress the vines pre-harvest, Cabernet Sauvignon must be nurtured between the point of good vibrant growth and a touch of stress to finish the grapes off. The health of these vines at veraison is important on we look to irrigate at this time.
Thereafter irrigation is gently reduced and the vines are comfortable in ripening their fruit. As we grow these grapes ourselves - quality is paramount and yield is a secondary factor. Through sacrificing yield we have a source of very rich concentrated grapes that allow for premium winemaking.
The Merlot is grown in a similar way, however due to its earlier ripening the use of irrigation is more critical. The vines are then not stressed as much and the quality is achieved by reduced yield regulated through pruning.