St Mary’s Cabernet Sauvignon House Block 2010

This wine rather tastes of a classic, tooth staining Coonawarra.  Yet unexpectedly, Coonawarra does not in fact appear to appear on the label.  Instead, only the substantially wider, and more humble, geographic indication of Limestone Coast is claimed.  To add to the mystique, St Mary’s website refers to the vines as being grown on a terra rossa ridge running through the vineyard, situated 15 kilometres west of Penola.  Thus, we would appear here to have the ingredients of Coonawarra, without the label.  This is a much better state of affairs than the converse.

The wine in the glass has heady aromatics of menthol, vanilla, wood and blackcurrant.   There’s long length on the palate, together with expressions of mint, menthol and resounding blackcurrant again.  Rich and full bodied, this burly wine is matched in power only by its oak maturation, although ultimately the two reconcile.  Overall, this is a structured, flavoursome and full wine that promises a long life ahead.

Rating: Very Good, Abv: 14.5%, Price: $30, Vendors:, Website:, Tasted: 2014


  1. It is an odd outcome, and good luck to anyone wanting to spot the difference blind. Walks like a duck, swims like a duck, quacks like a duck…

  2. St Marys were the single biggest losers when the Coonawarra boundaries were redrawn. Kilometre after kilometre of inferior farmland east of the strip made the cut but not St Marys, even though it has quality Terra Rossa terroir. Coonawarra in every sense of the word.

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