dukes-magpie-hill-reserve-cabernet-sauvignon-2018
dukes-magpie-hill-reserve-cabernet-sauvignon-2018

Duke's Vineyard Magpie Hill Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon 2018

Sale price$69.95
Porongurup, Great Southern, Western Australia, Australia

Style: Red Wine

Variety: Cabernet Sauvignon

Closure: Screwcap

⦿ ‎ 34 in stock
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Duke's Vineyard Magpie Hill Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon 2018

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, usually ready in 2-4 days

Burke Road
Camberwell VIC 3124
Australia

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Producer: Duke's Vineyard

Country: Australia

Region: Great Southern

Vintage: 2018

Critic Score: 98

Alcohol: 13.5%

Size: 750 ml

Drink by: 2040


A superb cabernet. The price rendered me speechless - James Halliday

James Halliday Top 100 Wines of 2019

Duke Ranson always dreamt of establishing a vineyard in the Porongurup subregion of Great Southern, so in 1998 he purchased a 65ha farm at the foot of the Porongurup Range. He chose to plant  Riesling, Cabernet Sauvignon (Duke's favourite) and Shiraz, varieties that are beautifully suited to the cool-climate Great Southern region.

"Elegant and perfectly ripe - French oak adding spice and providing the platform for exceptional fruit to shine. This is a glorious wine. Huge respect for winemaking here."  Nick Butler

The vineyard is home to 3 hectares of Cabernet Sauvignon and the wine is made by the highly talented Rob Diletti, who was James Halliday's inaugural 'Wine Maker of the Year' in 2015. The Magpie Hill Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon, their flagship cabernet, is typically plush, rich and concentrated and can be drunk young or cellared with confidence.

 

Duke Ranson discusses Duke's Vineyard

Duke Ranson discusses Duke's Vineyard

Expert reviews

"Deeply coloured. A superb cabernet that will be calling the shots for decades to come. Its richness is spectacular because it parallels the wine's power. Endless peaks of supple blackcurrant and cassis make light of the varietal tannins that can dog cabernet. The price rendered me speechless. Drink by 2048."  James Halliday, Halliday Wine Companion - 98 points and Top 100 Wines of 2019 and Special Value Wine  

The oak is on centre stage (35% new French), although the fruit weight behind it is significant. Ripe. Saturating. Concentrated. Cassis and raspberry mingle with mulberry and there is a creaminess here too"€�  Erin Larkin, erinlarkin.com.au – 96 points

"Deep and bright purple colour. Opaque and confident. Loads of oak-spice, dark soy, black and blue berries, a dried herb underbelly. Elegant and perfectly ripe - French oak adding spice and providing the platform for exceptional fruit to shine. This is a glorious wine. Huge respect for winemaking here. Drink: 2019-2031.”  Nick Butler, The Real Review - 95 points 

Awards

James Halliday Top 100 Wines of 2019
Special Value Wine – Halliday Wine Companion  ★ 

Porongurup

Porongurup wine sub-regionThe Great Southern wine region of Western Australia is the most ancient, most isolated and largest wine region in the world. The region is up to 2.8 billion years old and covers over 1.7 million hectares, a whopping 200 kilometres from east to west and 100km from north to south. Since the Nyittiny – creation times – our First Nations people of the Wagyl Kaip region have shared and cared for this Great Southern country.

Great Southern time is a place of dramatic contrasts - striking tall timber forests, swathes of rich agricultural land, imposing mountain ranges, dramatic peaks and ancient rivers. Due to its vast size and spread, it features not only different terroirs but climates that vary from the Mediterranean through to the maritime, resulting in unique wines that reflect their natural surroundings. From this diversity a wine region of international significance and reputation has emerged – the pristine Great Southern wine region.

The region is divided into five distinct sub-regions, each producing wine styles that reflect their unique terroir. The sub-regions are Porongurup, Frankland River, Mount Barker, Denmark and Albany - refer to the map below.

Porongurup sub-region

Porongurup is a very small wine district just east of Mount Barker and 40km north of Albany. It is named after the oldest mountain range in the world, the Porongurups, a group of domed granite peaks whose formation dates back many millions of years to the Precambrian age. 

The sub-region encompasses the entire 12km long Porongurup Range, whose peaks reach a height of 670 meters at the Devil's Slide and are visible from any vineyard in the region. Today around 10 vineyards bask on the sunny northern slopes of these ancient hills.

Porongurup's climate is mostly Mediterranean with cool to mild winters and sunny and warm summers. With a mean January temperature of just 19 degrees Celsius, it has an extended ripening season, with grapes harvested in mid-March through to May. The regular sea breeze which blows inland on hot summer afternoons also contributes to the extended growing season.

Due to its aspect and height above sea level, the sub-region boasts a special climatic feature, a nocturnal thermal zone created by warm air rising above the denser cold air sliding down the hillsides and settling on the valley floor. The conditions produced from this air drainage are ideal for ripening and reduce the risk of frost. 

Wine grape production in the Porongurup began in 1978 with plantings of Riesling and Cabernet Sauvignon, followed by more plantings in 1979 and 1983. Today there are also plantings of Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Shiraz, as the Porongurup’s reputation as a producer of distinctive cool climate wines continues to grow. 

Porongurup can produce standout Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Cabernet and Shiraz, but it is Riesling that is undoubtedly the star of the show, the conditions being ideal for producing riesling of exquisite precision and drive.
 

The five sub-regions of Great SouthernPorongurup is one of the five sub-regions of Great Southern

The winemakers 

Rob Diletti Castle Rock WinemakerRob Diletti

Rob Diletti is the winemaking son of Castle Rock Estate founders Angelo and Wendy Diletti. During his formative years Rob worked in the family's vineyard, developing a keen interest in grape-growing. After graduating from Charles Sturt University with a Wine Science degree, Rob gained winemaking experience at Mountadam Wines, Grosset Wines, Plantagenet Wines, Jean Grenier in Alsace, and Alkoomi Wines prior to returning home to Castle Rock Estate.

"Porongurup is splendidly remote (390km from Perth, 40km from Albany), and, while blessed with stunning vineyards, has almost no sizeable wineries. As a result, Diletti has become both the frontman for Castle Rock Estate and the de facto Porongurup region winemaker, crafting wines under contract for various local vineyards, including Duke's and 3 Drops."  Andrew Graham

"Rob Diletti is highly intelligent and modest. He was the recipient of the inaugural Winemaker of the Year Award in my 2015 Wine Companion. His superb palate, sensitive winemaking and countless trophies and gold medals leave no doubt about Diletti's skills."  James Halliday

Since 2012, Rob Diletti has made the wines at Duke’s Vineyard. Duke and Hilde Ranson retired in 2022 and sold the vineyard to Ben Cane and his partner Sarah Date. Ben was previously chief winemaker at Cape Mentelle in Margaret River. Rob Diletti and Ben Cane are now working in partnership to continue making the wines. 

"The quality of Duke’s Vineyard’s wines, made at the Diletti family’s custom-crush facility on the Castle Rock property, never faltered. But to find someone to share the dream meant owning a vineyard and cellar door; a winemaker able to work with Rob Diletti; and grow the brand. In 2021, winemaker Ben Cane and partner Sarah Date began putting the pieces together, Ben working a trial vintage that year at Castle Rock. 

He is a very experienced winemaker who has worked overseas and in Australia at various times as an employee, consultant and co-owner. He is sensitive to the special place and much-loved Duke and Hilde in Porongurup, and is attuned to growing the brand by increasing quality, not quantity. He has moved to organic vineyard management, with biodynamics around the corner. He has also changed pruning to cane, thus allowing greater sunlight and breeze penetration through the canopy. Three clones of each pinot noir and chardonnay will underwrite new plantings of these varieties. 

And so it goes on. Duke left big boots to fill, and I’m confident Ben will do just that."  James Halliday

Duke's Vineyard winemaker Ben CaneBen Cane 

Winery

dukes vineyard

Duke and Hilde Ranson long held a dream to establish a vineyard in the Porongurup sub-region of Great Southern, so in 1998 they purchased a 65ha farm at the foot of the Porongurup Range. They chose to plant Riesling, Cabernet Sauvignon (Duke's favourite) and Shiraz, varieties that are beautifully suited to the cool-climate Great Southern region. The first vines were planted on Duke's 60th birthday in 1999.

The vineyard is a unique site that sits at the feet of the ancient granite Porongurup peaks with warm ripening days and cooler nights tempered with maritime breezes. To the north are sweeping views of the Stirling Ranges. There are currently 10 hectares of vines planted, 4ha of Riesling and 3ha each of Cabernet Sauvignon and Shiraz.

Since 2012, the wines have been made by Rob Diletti at Castle Rock Winery, just down the road from Duke's Vineyard at the eastern end of the Porongurups. Rob was James Halliday's inaugural 'Wine Maker of the Year' in 2015. 

Duke and Hilde Ranson retired in 2022 and sold the vineyard to Ben Cane and his partner Sarah Date. Ben was previously chief winemaker at Cape Mentelle in Margaret River. Rob Diletti and Ben Cane are now working in partnership to continue making the wines.

"The quality of Duke’s Vineyard’s wines, made at the Diletti family’s custom-crush facility on the Castle Rock property, never faltered. But to find someone to share the dream meant owning a vineyard and cellar door; a winemaker able to work with Rob Diletti; and grow the brand. In 2021, winemaker Ben Cane and film/ media/special events producer partner Sarah Date began putting the pieces together, Ben working a trial vintage that year at Castle Rock. 

He is a very experienced winemaker who has worked overseas and in Australia at various times as an employee, consultant and co-owner. He is sensitive to the special place and much-loved Duke and Hilde in Porongurup, and is attuned to growing the brand by increasing quality, not quantity. He has moved to organic vineyard management, with biodynamics around the corner. He has also changed pruning to cane, thus allowing greater sunlight and breeze penetration through the canopy. Three clones of each pinot noir and chardonnay will underwrite new plantings of these varieties. 

And so it goes on. Duke left big boots to fill, and I’m confident Ben will do just that."  James Halliday

In Duke's last newsletter he penned this beautifully poignant poem, featuring his beloved dog Cindy, about the changing of the guard:

Old Dogs…New Dogs

There's a new dog on the block and he's young and fit and lean.
He gets on well with Cindy who remains the cellar queen.
His name is Dujac and that's a place of wine.
A winery in France with Burgundy divine. 

His breeding's somewhat vague but Kelpie comes to mind.
With a bit of Border Collie somewhere intertwined.
His job is to watch his master as Ben walks to the fore.
To eventually relieve Cindy at Duke's Vineyard cellar door.

In the meantime, it's all learning with customers in mind.
To look after feline lovers as well as the canine kind.
To play with kids to entertain while parents have a taste.
And when he gets in trouble, to disappear in haste.

It is an age-old story of the old dog and the new.
The young dog chases all the kids and the old dog just a few.
The young dog gets his meal and devours it oh so fast.
The old dog sits and ponders hers to make the pleasure last.

 It's really just history of the passing of the guard.
The logic is so simple, but some dogs make it hard.
Some old dogs are so stubborn, to weaken is a sin.
But just move over old dog, the new dog's movin' in. 

So now it's Ben and Sarah, Duke and Hilde have a spell.
We've changed not just the people, we've changed the dogs as well.
The vineyard carries on regardless with good weather from above.
But the wine that bears the label, will still be made with love.


Duke and CindyDuke and Cindy
 

wine region map of australia

Western Australia

Western Australia is home to more than 400 wineries across nine vast and extraordinary wine regions which are almost entirely concentrated in the south-west and great southern land divisions of the State. The regions are Blackwood Valley, Geographe, Great Southern, Peel, Pemberton, Manjimup, Margaret River and Swan District.

The oldest region is the Swan Valley, the best known both nationally and internationally is Margaret River and the largest is Great Southern. The Great Southern region is further divided into the five subregions of Albany, Denmark, Frankland River, Mount Barker and Porongurup.

The history of wine production in Western Australia dates back to 1840 with the establishment of Sandalford in the Swan Valley region. The recognition of the fine wine possibilities started to be realised after the establishment of the Margaret River Region in 1967, which has become renowned for its high quality Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon. The other regions produce a diverse range of regionally distinct wines, from stunning Rieslings and evocative Shiraz, to a range of unique Cabernet Sauvignon blends.