2011 Cullen Diana Madeline

Ralph Kyte-Powell
WINERY Cullen Wines
RRP 113
Food match Roast veal; rare roast beef.

Low-strength Australian cabernet-based reds can have ripeness issues, but this elegant, tangy Margaret River cabernet blend shows what's possible at 12.5 per cent. From inspired winemaker Vanya Cullen, it has scents of blackcurrants, violets and leaves, bitter chocolate, cedar, and minerals. The intense palate combines ripe and savoury flavours with a silky feel, a lingering finish and balanced tannins. (Screw cap; 12.5 per cent alcohol.)

Ageing? Yes, three to 12 years-plus.