Although its Reserve Merlot is positioned as the flagship, Blue Poles Vineyard’s Allouran is usually my favourite in the range. For starters, I do enjoy a bit of Cabernet Franc. To this label, it contributes a light elegance that has always struck me as especially attractive, and this 2010 vintage wine is no exception. This might be the most refined expression yet.
Aromatically, this blends the floral and ripe red capsicum notes I associate with Cabernet Franc with the graphite I associate with Merlot from this vineyard. It’s a good combination, the aroma profile capturing a full range of notes from high toned to bass. It’s not especially fruit-sweet, but there’s a core of the prettiest, most luxurious red berries surrounded by ripe flowers. Oak is there, providing a few extra notes around the edges.
One would have to enjoy a bit of acid to really love this wine and, as it happens, I do. Entry is bright with red fruit and sap, moving to a mid-palate of good focus and precision. There’s a hint of expansiveness here that suggests the wine will grow in weight and generosity with time. Even now, it’s intense and complex. The after palate is strikingly savoury and presents a mix of red capsicum and coffee grounds that move naturally into a tannin structure of considerable finesse. Indeed, texture becomes the primary pleasure as the wine moves through its extended finish.
Although this is a 2010 vintage wine, it’s not yet released and rightly so — it’s still incredibly young-tasting. Very good value. I do believe I’ll be buying some.
Blue Poles Vineyard