The inaugural release of this wine, from the 2018 vintage, was one of those jaw-dropping moments for the CellarHand team. There was no doubting the pedigree. But it was released so darn young. And though Rob and Gen believed in the site and had worked their socks off to bring it up to scratch, the question remained: How much could you really expect from a first attempt?
The answer was right there in the glass. The aroma itself was all nature and purity – flowers, vivid berries and the sea-spray freshness and tang of Redgate Beach. Then on the palate, succulent, sleek, graceful and energetic. The bright fruit shimmered with immaculate, gravel-flecked tannin.
We were privileged to see it first. But then others confirmed the impression of that ‘18:
Fresh and opulent. Fully ripe Cabernet with a fresh, marine overlay and Margaret River’s balance and rigour. – Jancis Robinson
Beautifully balanced, precise and poised. – The Real Review
Beautiful wine. Succulent, seamless, flowing. – Mike Bennie
Beautiful expression of Cabernet here. – Gary Walsh
A very attractive and convincingly concentrated palate. Impressive poise and depth. – Nick Stock
So it was proven beyond doubt, then, the Calgardup Vineyard was ready to take on the world, and Rob and Gen had truly found a home that would allow their prodigious talent to flourish.
And now we have the follow up, from the quieter but equally auspicious 2019 vintage. “We really wanted to make a wine that tastes as fresh and vibrant as this pristine coastal location in which it’s grown,” says Gen. “It’s a wine that exudes perfumed floral characters. It has beautiful saltbush salinity. And for me it has some beautiful pliable, velvety tannins that also exude a typical vineyard characteristic of graphite-like structure.”
Rob and Gen are a dazzlingly brilliant duo and this vineyard in Calgardup has confirmed its status as a rare and distinctive treasure. We’re extremely excited to present to you its second coming.
This wine is the realisation of a dream seeded by Rob’s grandfather, Jack Mann, a departure from the orthodox, to achieve a unique expression of Margaret River Cabernet. Variety, place and experience are woven together to redefine what’s possible.
Our second release from our dry-grown, organically farmed Calgardup vineyard. Located just 2km inland from the famous Redgate Beach in Margaret River, we have continued to revitalise this vineyard with acute attention to detail. The fruit was harvested on two picking dates in April; individually berry sorted prior to natural, whole-berry fermentation in a single French oak vat. Maturation followed in four seasoned barriques for 10 months.
100% Cabernet Sauvignon (126 clone planted in 2002) from the Calgardup vineyard in Redgate, Margaret River. Planting density is 1785 vines per hectare on Keenan gravelly loam. The fruit was picked on 8th and 18th April 2019. Alcohol 13.3%; pH 3.61; total acidity 5.32 g/L. Bottled 7th February 2020.
We have made a wine that tastes as fresh and vibrant as the pristine coastal location of its origin. It tastes of the grape, the dirt and the sea without pretention and exudes all the characters of Margaret River Cabernet that the world admires. Perfumed and aromatic with violets, deep redcurrants, and coastal herbs complement a palate that is intense, vibrant and medium bodied with nori and satsuma plums framed by the vineyard’s typical graphite-like structure. – Rob & Gen Mann
REVIEWGary Walsh, The Wine Front June 2020
Nutty, charry, black olive, samphire, floral perfume, umeboshi plum and blackberry. It’s medium-bodied, saline and dark, with a smooth web of graphite tannin, subdued acidity, and a fairly long fine perfumed finish. Needs a little while to come up, slightly sullen as at now, but with more to come, I suspect. 93+ points.
Our second release of our Rocket’s Vineyard Chenin Blanc. We’re a little excited to welcome this wine again to our family. Rob and his father, former Australian Test Cricketer Tony “Rocket” Mann, planted the Chenin Blanc vines together on their family property more than 25 years ago. We have put in the hard work in the vineyard, transitioning to organic farming with acute attention to detail, to ensure we continue the Mann family tradition of creating remarkable wines with a unique sense of place.
The grapes were harvested by hand over two days and whole bunch pressed prior to natural fermentation. A portion was matured in seasoned French oak barriques for seven months prior to blending and bottling. The wine shows distinctive characters of lemon pith, blackcurrant leaf, fresh crunchy pear with a textural, vibrant and typically saline finish. It’s so salivating, it’s the perfect drink for every occasion. – Rob & Gen Mann
It’s gently spiced with pepper and cinnamon quills. It’s floral with some fresh herbs, poached apple, bees wax and refreshing lemon barley water flavours. The palate is altogether racier, almost Riesling-like acidity keeping this long and pure with the right amount of phenolics adding that extra layer. 95 points.James Halliday, Halliday Wine Companion July 2020
Corymbia Chenin will be The Next Big Thing. Precise and racy style, kept in check with limey acidity and chalky phenolic grip. Actually, so much grip, rivulets of talc-and-salt-like pucker and chew. Serious structure and finesse in tow. Lime, tonic water, mixed minerals. Whoosh. Belter of a wine. 93+ points.Mike Bennie, The Wine Front November 2019
Some attractive, flinty and stony notes here with lemons and sliced green apples, in a very fresh mode. The palate has a very fresh, sleek feel with beautifully crisp, fresh and elegantly pure resolve. Drink now. Screw cap. 93 points.Nick Stock, JamesSuckling.com April 2020
58% Tempranillo, 30% Malbec, 12% Cabernet Sauvignon from soils of Herne Hill loam on Rocket’s Vineyard, Upper Swan. The fruit is dry grown and organically farmed by former Australian Test Cricketer Tony (Rocket) Mann, Robert and Genevieve Mann. Tony and his son Rob first planted the vineyard together on their family property in the Swan Valley more than 35 years ago on what was an old currant vineyard. The grapes were harvested together, then individually berry sorted prior to natural fermentation in a single French oak vat. Maturation followed in the same vat and a seasoned 600-litre French oak demi-muid for 10 months.The wine expresses the qualities of the Swan Valley that Rob’s family has admired of the region for more than 100 years. The aim is to make a wine true to its site that captures the warmth and richness of the valley and affords great drinkability. A beautifully expressive aroma of satsuma plums, black olives, rosewater and with a hint of aniseed. The wine tastes fresh and lively of pomegranate, cacao, maraschino cherries and is complemented by Tempranillo’s characteristic coal dust tannin structure. – Rob & Gen Mann
Highly perfumed, pretty almost floral scents, violets come to mind, whiffs of blueberry/mulberry, green olive, a touch of clove woody spice, sarsaparilla and anise. Just lovely. Medium weight, sinewy feel, succulent and beautiful, fine web of clove-licked tannins, great energy here, bright and lengthy, fine, tight finish here. Has a ‘serious’ feel but also deliciousness. 95 points.Mike Bennie, The Wine Front November 2019
Corymbia’s 2018 Tempranillo Malbec Cabernet Sauvignon includes 58%, 30% and 12% of those varieties, respectively. Co-fermented and aged in a single large oak vat, it’s a fruit-forward, mouthwatering bowl of mixed berries, including hints of blueberry, mulberry and raspberry. Yet while this medium to full-bodied effort is open and soft, it’s not unstructured, showing a core of resilient, ripe tannins and a long, juicy finish. 92 points.Joe Czerwinski, Wine Advocate March 2020