One of the truly great partnerships in the Barossa is the blending of Cabernet Sauvignon and Shiraz. Whatever the proportions and regardless of whether Shiraz or Cabernet is dominant the synergy is unmistakable.At david Franz I'm pretty much always putting Cabernet Front and Center!
The components for the 2017 Alexander’s Reward Cabernet Sauvignon Shiraz: Cabernet Sauvignon from the ‘House on the Hill’ Cabernet Sauvignon block - 75% - (which drives this blend) along with a selection of Shiraz parcels - 25% - which were all sourced from our 'House on the Hill' and 'Stone Well Hill' Vineyards
Total production 1500 bottles - released October 2022
Deep dense red with hints of brick lingering around the meniscus.
spearmint perfume layered over black and redcurrant and summer berries. lifted vanilla oak blends back and is filled out with the complexity of the spicy French giving an beautifully balanced nose
The initial richness of the full raspberry characters are poised against the spearmint menthol over finely balanced against firm oak and fruit Tannins. Good acid against the fruit sweetness, cleanses the senses for a beautifully balanced mouthful.The middle palate is full of the of the big berry hit of Cabernet supported by the leathery richness of Shiraz. The long palate finishes with the deep bass complexity brought out by extended lees contact.
It’s the 13th of October 2022 and as winter continues to hold onto the year like a fat kid with a donut it’s time to pen the 2017 Alex’s Label. The ‘Pandemic’ seems to be all but ‘non-news’ now and life seems to have come back to a solid sense of normal. Alex and I are hanging out a lot these days, now that both Ben and Georgie are long gone from the nest. Alex is Knuckling down for the back-end push-through to finish year 11, and while I’d be lying if I said he’s really enjoying it... I can say hand on heart he’s doing it pretty well. Anyway, in a complete mental left turn, I just have to note that reading last year’s Alexander’s Reward Label has completely spun me out. I noted that Alex and I had been dreaming about the international boarders re-opening and where we’d like to visit/eat first. Mexico was touted as one of the destinations of choice (I wish...). Turns out that spontaneously, a few weeks ago, the whole family went over to Mexico and had an awesome time. In-fact, it was so awesome Nicki decided that she wanted to stay on... meaning that Alex and I are kings of the Mt Lehmo Bachelor Pad Baby! While I’d like to intimate it’s all wild parties and staying up late (while the boss is away etc etc) the reality is that its cook-ups and just hanging out chatting. Apparently is what we do. It’s really nice and suits us both just fine.
The 2017 Alexander’s Reward Cabernet Sauvignon Shiraz is a perfect example of why a cooler, ‘wetter’ year can have that X-factor effect in the Barossa. Obviously the choices we make in the vineyard during the growing season and when we pick can make or break the end result – no matter how clever we can be in the winery. But hey, I’d argue that’s true in any year. That said, I think having the patience to pick on flavour ripeness and not a given metric made all the difference – as those that picked early know all to well. Funnily, most years I’m thinking the picking is generally too late – resulting in over-cooked over-ripe wines... but 2017 was the opposite as flavours took their own sweet time to arrive and balance was late to come. But patience in hindsight was warranted and once again the Alexander’s Reward is the epitome of lithe sexy structure over fruit purity that sings through careful oak complexity. The 2017 Alexander’s Reward Cabernet Shiraz was created from small batch parcels drawn from Sand, Loam and Clay from both our Stone Well Hill and Stelzer Road Vineyards. Each batch was hand plunged three times a day during ferment before being basket pressed after a total of 30 days on skins. The wine was filled with full lees to a mix of old and new Oak for 25 months maturation before being racked to tank to settle. After final blending, 1500 bottles were filled (unfiltered) of the 2017 Alexander’s Reward Cabernet Shiraz in March 2020. Team david Franz have as always finished the bottle with the hand printed love we would never let it leave home without.
Enjoy and Cheers!