Fine and Rare Coonawarra Cabernet Sauvignon 1998
Widely acclaimed as one of the truly great Coonawarra vintages.
Region: Coonawarra, South Australia
Colour: Mature brick red.
Bouquet: Primary fruits of ripe raspberry still dominate the nose with hints of regional violets and complexing maturity.
Palate: Full-bodied and a generous St Hugo style, with concentrated berry fruit, soft and supple tannins and a lingering structured finish.
Fully mature and ready to drink now.
Recommended with herb-crusted lamb rack served with Rösti of sweet potato and basil and a red wine glaze
15th October 2019
2000 Royal Adelaide Wine Show
2000 Best Limited Release Dry Red (Class 49)
2000 Royal Adelaide Wine Show 2000 (Class 49)
2001 Royal Queensland Wine Show 2001 (Class 27)
2001 Royal Melbourne Wine Show 2001 (Class 62)
2001 Limestone Coast Wine Show 2001 (Class 19)
2001 Royal Hobart Wine Show 2001 (Class 49)
2002 Cairns Show Wine Awards 2002 (Class 8)
2002 Cowra Wine Show 2002 (Class 83)
2005 National Wine Show of Australia 2005 (Class 34)
2007 Limestone Coast Wine Show 2007 (Class 32)
The 1998 vintage was preceded by a temperate growing season with ideal grape-growing conditions. The final months prior to harvest were warm and dry leading to stylish concentrated flavours and strong colours. 1998 has been widely acclaimed as one of the truly great Coonawarra vintages. The progress of ripening in individual vineyards was regularly monitored by winemakers during February and March. Vineyards displaying rich fruit character and a full tannin profile were earmarked for potential inclusion in the St Hugo blend. The decision to harvest selected vineyards was taken when the grape flavour was maximised and a balanced structure was achieved. All vineyards reached between 12.7 and 14.2 baumé.
Individual vineyards were treated separately throughout the winemaking process. Winemaking strategies varied between individual parcels, with the aim of creating a diverse range of Coonawarra cabernet base wines to allow for blend finessing after barrel maturation and to build complexity in the final blend. Fermentation was carried out in static fermenters at temperatures ranging from 20°C to 26°C. Ferments were pumped over twice daily to irrigate the grape skin cap and facilitate tannin extraction. Ferments were drained periodically into open fermenters and returned to further enhance extraction. Wines were drained and pressed, with the press wine being blended with the free-run after clarification. Selected wines were drained into new French hogsheads to complete fermentation. After fermentation, all wines were filled into new and one-year-old oak, predominantly French. A small percentage of the wine was filled to American oak and was judiciously used in the final blend to add complexity. After 18 to 21 months of barrel maturation, only those barrels displaying the rich, ripe, and complex characters required of St Hugo were included. The selected wines were then blended and bottled without filtration.
Alcohol: 13.2 alc/vol
Total Acid: 6.6 g/L