In 1974, and at the ripe old age of 76, Sydney Hamilton was chasing his life ambition of growing and making a classic Australian Cabernet. He purchased land on the now world famous ‘terra rossa’ strip in Coonawarra. He called it Leconfield.
The Hamilton family is one of Australia’s original winemaking families (going way back to 1837) and it was in 1981 (after a whopping 65 vintages under his belt!) that Sydney decided to hang up the boots and retire. It was his nephew, Dr Richard Hamilton, who bought the company from his uncle and combined it with his own Richard Hamilton Wines brand and based it at the Leconfield winery in the McLaren Vale.
This has been their flagship wine since 1976 and this latest 2019 release is an absolute blockbuster! Some of the fruit comes from vines from that original 1974 planting, its aged for 18 months in 100% French oak. For around the $30 mark you are getting one hell of a Cabernet for your money. There are other names out there that’d try and charge you plenty more for quality like this…
95/100 & Top Rank, No.2 Coonawarra Cabernet from 2019 vintage (Huon Hooke, The Real Review)
“The bouquet is tremendously deep, gorgeously fragrant and varietal without any sign of greenness, while the palate is full-bodied and finely-textured, the structure excellent for cellaring without compromising its up-front appeal. A trace of coffee on the palate. It can already be enjoyed but has a long life ahead of it. Outstanding value for money, too.”
95/100 (Jane Faulkner, James Halliday’s Wine Companion)
“The tune is Coonawarra but its melody is Leconfield. A riff of blackberries and satsuma plums, mint and menthol tempered by woodsy spices, and the oak just so. All flavours flow through to a palate just shy of full bodied. There’s an elegance within, refreshing acidity and perfectly framed emery board tannins to close.”
Honestly, whip the top off a bottle of this, let it breath for ten minutes, pour yourself a glass, sit back and prepare to be blown away. Pair it with a good cut of beef or venison, you’ll be in heaven. If you’ve got the patience it’ll be seriously rewarded to tuck some of this away in cellar and enjoy between now and 2037. Very limited stocks in NZ.
Damn, you're looking young for your age!
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