In the recent January edition of Decanter magazine, one of the world's most respected wine magazines, a panel tasting took place of Margaret River Cabernet. The Margaret River wine region boasts a maritime influenced climate that is very similar to Bordeaux. Anthony Rose, the Decanter World Wine Awards Regional co-Chair for Australia said "With climate and soils similar to Bordeaux, it’s unsurprising these Western Australian Cabs share the refined tannins and classic lines of the Médoc".
A few of the interesting insights from this panel tasting included that due to the similarities in climate and soil between Margaret River and Bordeaux the wines can be very similar in a blind tasting. Alcohol levels across the board seem to be reducing down to around the 14%-13.5% region. The standout enclave was definitely the Wilyabrup region.
80 wines from Margaret River were tasted with only 16 achieving a rating of highly recommended. The Flametree SRS Wilyabrup Cabernet Sauvignon achieved a very high 92 points overall. "A seductive, sumptuous style with ripe plum and earthy tobacco. A touch of black olive and kelp with cedar spice underneath. The firm grip of tannin creeps up nicely to give texture and structure."
Anthony Rose summarised the tasting by remarking "Expectations of Margaret River Cabernet Sauvignon were high because this Western Australian enclave has quickly established itself as arguably Australia’s premier wine region for the variety."