Wine review — Cape Grace, Langmeil and Zema Estate

Cape Grace Margaret River

  • Chenin Blanc 2010 $20
  • Shiraz 2007 $34
  • Cabernet Sauvignon 2007 $48

We recently visited Cape Grace Wines, a 6.5-hectare estate established by Robert and Karen Karri-Davies at Wilyabrup, Margaret River, in 1996. Robert looks after the vineyard, Karen the marketing and contract winemaker Mark Messenger makes the wines on site. Their chenin blanc 2010 offers an attractive, chalk-dry alternative to mainstream varieties at a modest price. The 2007 Shiraz reveals yet another fine-boned face of the variety with its spiciness and fine tannins (the soon to be released, plush and supple 2008 shades it, though). And the graceful cabernet combines olive and blackcurrant varietal flavours with cedary oak. Available at

Langmeil Eden Valley Dry Riesling 2009 $19.50
Langmeil’s Paul Lindner sources the fruit for this beautiful wine from old, dry-grown vines high up in the Eden Valley, on the Barossa’s eastern flank. At a modest 11.5 per cent alcohol, with residual sugar of around seven grams per litre, it offers soft, fresh easy drinking. It’s the sort of wine that disappears quickly. But with every sip it grows in interest, revealing the pristine, delicate-but-intense flavours of this great variety. While the 2009 vintage is all but sold out the soon-to-be-released 2010 promises to be at least as good.

Zema Estate Coonawarra

  • Cluny Cabernet Merlot 2006
  • Shiraz 2007 $23–$25

Cluny – a blend of 60 per cent cabernet sauvignon, 25 per cent merlot, nine per cent cabernet franc and six per cent merlot – offers the bright, fresh aromas and flavours of ripe berries, in the unique Coonawarra mould. The palate’s medium bodied, elegantly structured and with four years’ bottle age, it’s ready to enjoy now and over the next four or five years. The shiraz, too, is medium bodied and built on bright berry flavours – but with varietal pepper and spice accent. These are beautifully made wines, allowing Coonawarra’s elegance and berry flavours to star.

Copyright © Chris Shanahan 2010