Moss Wood 1990 Cabernet Sauvignon
The 1990 Cabernet has a deep, bright red colour and fragrant, lifted perfumes with hints of fresh cherries, ripe berries and smokey, tarry characters. It has fresh, lively sweet berry flavours, soft fine-grain tannins and an aftertaste which lingers. This is an elegant, multi-dimensional wine which is rich and full-flavoured, supple, round and well-balanced.
Because of the quality of the fruit, a small amount will be released under the Special Reserve label. We believe that it will be hard to make a better Cabernet at Moss Wood than the 1990.
The growing season for the 1990 Cabernet was unique as the region experienced mild weather with regular rainfall during the summer. This summer rain delayed the harvest and there was some concern that the grapes would not ripen. Not only was this unfounded but the impact of the steady rainfall was beneficial to the vines and the composition of the fruit. The late harvest meant that the Marri gums had stopped flowering before picking was finished and so the birds did significant damage towards the end of vintage. This was compensated for by the abundant crop which ensured the production of a slightly above average volume of wine.
The 1990 Moss Wood Cabernet includes 5% Cabernet Franc, 0.03% Merlot. The introduction of Cabernet Franc to the blend is not a significant change: rather it is a fine tuning of the established Moss Wood Cabernet style. The young wine seems to have added a freshness and a cherry-like character as a result of the addition of the small amount of Cabernet Franc.
The wine was made in the traditional manner of the vineyard: picked at 12.5 beaume and fermented on skins for six days. To add another dimension to the blend, a small parcel of four vats was kept on skins for two weeks. The wine underwent its malolactic fermentation in stainless steel and was then stored in 225 litre barrels for twelve months. These were a combination of 50% of both Allier and Troncais barriques from Les Tonnelles de Bourgogne, with 38% of the wine being stored in new oak. After this time in oak, the wine was lightly fined and filtered and bottled in November 1991.
Although delicious now, it will benefit from up to fifteen years cellaring.