Reviewed: 1st December 2014
The Redman family are pioneers of the Coonawarra region, having been involved in growing grapes and making wine for almost a century.
Redman has stayed true to form and continues to only make red wines from grapes grown on the famous Terra Rossa soils. Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Shiraz are the only varieties used.
The wines have typically been made in a savoury, food-friendly style and have often aged very well. I have enjoyed several 30 – 40 year old bottles over the years and they have been a delight.
The contrast between the 2012 Cabernet and the other two wines reviewed here was marked. The older wines have settled into their structure and develop secondary characters. With 2012 however, the primary fruit characters were allowed to shine, without diminishing the ability to age. Admittedly, 2012 was an outstanding year for Coonawarra reds.
Whilst the Redman family are trying to stay true to Owen Redman’s philosophy on making wine, they are not standing still. Currently, there is a program of vineyard rejuvenation/replanting underway. Interestingly though, the wines are still bottled with cork.
Redman – Cabernet Sauvignon /Merlot/Shiraz – The Redman – 2004 (18.3). The bottle age here is obvious, as the fruit has started to open and soften within a complex savoury frame. There are lovely minty cabernet notes on the nose. The palate is still fresh and vibrant, with the fine fruit sitting nicely with the oak. The tannins are still firm, but in combination with the acid, they keep the wine youthful and alive, whilst adding texture. An impressive wine that, whilst enjoyable now, is sure to age well for some time to come. (RRP $70. 200 dozen produced).
Redman – Cabernet Sauvignon – 2012 – (17.9). Impressive nose that has depth and power to the fruit. A classic Coonawarra Cabernet that has menthol and eucalyptus notes over blackberry fruit. The tannins are a little grippy – though this adds to the mouth-feel. A powerful (though elegant) wine that needs a few years to hit its straps. Whilst maintaining a link to the other wines, the impression is that an effort has been made to preserve the fruit characters.(RRP $29).
Redman – Cabernet Sauvignon/Merlot – 2009 (17.5). Varietally correct nose, with menthol, eucalypt and herbal notes. This is a savoury wine with bright acidity carrying the finish. Though not an overt blockbuster, the fruit is supple and ripe and the mouth-feel excellent. Good depth on the palate, with excellent length and persistence to close. This is a savoury wine, with leaner fruit characters and balanced tannins and is sure to age well for a decade or more. Will sit well with food today. (RRP $35).