A Rodda Tete Du Cuvee 2018

  • In traditional usage, “Tête de Cuvée” refers to the wine of the highest quality.
  • selected from the top 10 rows of the North-East facing Cabernet Sauvignon block
  • The 2018 Tête de Cuvée consists of Cabernet Sauvignon (74%), Merlot (24%) and Petit Verdot (2%).
  • 1 or more bottles
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  • James Halliday'
    94 points
  • Huon Hooke
    93 points

Editors notes

In traditional usage, “Tête de Cuvée” refers to the wine of the highest quality.

Sourced from the Smith’s Vineyard in Beechworth, fruit was selected from the top 10 rows of the North-East facing Cabernet Sauvignon block and the small, low yielding Merlot block. In the best growing seasons, the resulting blend is elevated to the Tête de Cuvée release.

Hand picked fruit was destemmed and crushed prior to fermentation whereby a combination of pump-overs, rack and returns and plunging was utilized for cap management. Post-fermentation, the Cabernet Sauvignon was held on skins for a further 18 days. The wines were pressed to French oak barriques consisting of 50% first use and 50% second use. After 12 months, the wines were racked to old 600 litre thick stave oak casks for a further 8 months prior to bottling.

The 2018 Tête de Cuvée consists of Cabernet Sauvignon (74%), Merlot (24%) and Petit Verdot (2%).


Tasting Profile

  • Light (Light)
    Full (Full)
  • Low Tannin (Low Tannin)
    Tannic (Tannic)
  • Sweet (Sweet)
    Dry (Dry)
  • Low Acidity (Low Acidity)
    High Acidity (High Acidity)
  • Aroma
  • Palate

Food Pairings

  • Pork
  • Red Meat

Critic Scores & reviews

  • James Halliday's Wine Companion

    ""75/24/2% cabernet sauvignon /merlot/petit verdot. Hand-picked fruit, destemmed and crushed, held on skins for 18 days, pressed to French oak barriques (50% new) for 12 months then racked to old 600L oak casks for a further 8 months. Tête de Cuvée refers to a wine of the highest quality. Celebrating a top vintage with a new reserve wine, it is unusual (and quietly exciting) to see a quality cabernet blend out of Beechworth. Offers a tight-knit wine, a mere youngster still, firm in dry, grainy tannins, smart oak and serious, dark fruit flavours. It’s varietally on point, well balanced and assured of a big future." - Jeni Port (Halliday Wine Companion)"
  • Huon Hooke

    ""Deepish red/purple colour, with a subdued and gently earthy bouquet, strong on the savoury side of the aromatic ledger, the flavour similar with drying powdery, earthy tannins and a quite forceful grip. Deep-seated dark berry, briar and char-oak notes. It's tightly focused and elegant along the palate. Very good and better if cellared a while." - Huon Hooke"

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Australia's wine industry is a thriving part of the country's economy, contributing significantly to employment, production, export, and tourism. In fact, the industry is the fourth-largest wine exporter in the world, shipping out 760 million liters of wine to countries including France, Italy, Spain, and the UK. One of the key factors contributing to Australia's success as a "New World" wine producer is the formal export and marketing of its wines through Wine Australia.

Australia's wine regions are scattered across the south and southeast, with almost every state boasting its own vineyards. Victoria, for example, is home to an impressive 21 wine regions. Some of the most famous wine regions in Australia include Margaret River, Barossa Valley, McLaren Vale, Eden Valley, Clare Valley, Hunter Valley, Yarra Valley, and local regions to New South Wales such as Cowra, Southern Highlands, and Mudgee.

Australian winemakers are known for producing a diverse range of grape varieties, with Shiraz, Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, and Pinot Noir being among the most popular. They tend to focus on producing wines that are ripe, fruit-forward, and easy to drink, using modern winemaking techniques and equipment such as stainless steel tanks and temperature-controlled fermentation.

With its bold, fruit-driven flavors and reputation for quality and diversity, Australian wine has become a popular choice for wine lovers around the world. And with such a broad range of wine regions and grape varieties, there's something for every palate to enjoy.


The wine region of Victoria has the highest number of grapevines than any other state in Australia. It is home to over 600 wineries and well-known regions such as Yarra Valley, Heathcote, and Rutherglen. Victoria is situated in the southeastern corner of Australia where due to the location, the climate has a cool maritime influence and is known for its outstanding Pinot Noir and Chardonnay, along with producing Australia’s most famed dessert Muscat and Topaque wines.

There are a number of different terroir levels throughout the wine region of Victoria which leads to the production of different ranges of wines. In the southern region of Victoria, the vines are regulated by the cool winds of the Bass Strait. Central Victoria consists of mostly flat terrain that tends to be drier and warmer than the rest of Victoria, which results in more fruit concentrated wines. It may be surprising to note that Victoria is the third most productive wine region in Australia, seeing as it does not have as many areas suitable for viticulture, which has resulted in the cellar door culture of Victoria being concentrated with smaller, but more personal boutique wineries.


With soils packed with minerals and a range of altitudes and terroir, Beechworth is situated on the continental side of the Victorian Alps, setting the scene for warm, sunny days as well as cool nights, which temper any heat and produce wine grapes with natural elegance.

Beechworth is home to some of the best Chardonnay produced in Australia, along with other cool-climate varietals like Pinot Noir. A focus on small batch production lends a boutique air to Beechworth with winemakers being hands-on when it comes to every aspect of their vines and wines.

About the brand A Rodda Wines

Adrian Rodda began making wine in 1998 with David Bicknell at Oakridge, mastering the art of Chardonnay along the way. These days, however, you’ll find him trudging around the old Smiths Vineyard in Beechworth which was first planted in the mid-1970s and, coincidentally, is home to some excellent Chardonnay vines which Adrian has since made very good use of.

In 2015 he was named the Young Gun of Wine for his A. Rodda Wines label, which has been establishing a name for itself thanks to consistently outstanding Chardonnay, along with Tempranillo and a Cabernet-based Cuvee de Chez. Adrian’s approach to winemaking is all about letting the fruit speak for itself, with classic wines the result.

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