Vasse Felix: where to start. The first winery to plant vines in the modern era of Margaret River. Responsible for some of the greatest wines that the region has produced over that historical period. Consistently producing elegant, high-class expressions of the Margaret River terroir. Responsible for a couple of my all-time favourite chardonnays and cabernets. Check, check, check and check.
2018 Vasse Felix Filius Cabernet Sauvignon, Margaret River This Filius cabernet is their ‘entry-level’ cabernet and a brilliant expression of Margaret River from this glorious vintage. The wine has excellent clarity of fruit and admirable texture and concentration for a wine of its price. It is both silky and structured, elegant and plush, and continuing in the theme of contrasts – spicy and yet fruit-driven. This speaks of class and purity on all levels, and next to their 2014 Filius, the best they’ve produced under this label to date.
As a little aside, I’ve seen some of the older Filius cabs and they are ageing gracefully… meaning this is not just a ‘Mr- Right-Now’. I look at the 14 Filius each year, my favourite under the label, until this, and I am excited to report that 2014 is evolving gracefully (albeit faster than the Premier and Icon, but that is to be expected). Released from the winery in March 2020, this vintage will be rolling over the 2017’s that are currently in store, if, in fact, there are any of them left. Get familiar with the delicate and finesse that was endemic to the 2017 vintage and then make room for this one.