Wantirna Estate Amelia Cabernet Sauvignon Merlot 2019

  • This is a wine with a good heart, a good finish and a good story to tell, all of which comes draped over a structure of classic design - 95 Campbell Mattinson
  • "One of my favourite wines" - Gary Walsh
  • Very limited
  • 1 or more bottles
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  • Gary Walsh
    96 points
  • Huon Hooke
    96 points
  • James Halliday'
    95 points
  • James Suckling
    95 points

Editors notes

The 2019 growing season was certainly one of many parts. After the hottest and driest January on record, February was up and down in temperature with March pretty warm to start with. But after a run of warm days, autumn seemed to arrive, and we had lovely cool nights and mild days for the last three weeks of the Merlot and Cabernet ripening. And the nice part of the story is that there was quite a decent crop across the varieties. We harvested the grapes over two weeks, bringing the Cabernet Franc and Merlot in first, followed by the Cabernet Sauvignon and finally the last variety to be harvested: Petit Verdot. 2019 was the first year in our new winery. So much space. Not only were we happy winemakers but we were able to utilise many small 1000-litre fermenters. Each batch is hand-plunged and/or pumped over a couple of times a day. This keeps the ferment temperature under control, allows the skins and juice to stay amalgamated and begins to gently extract flavours and tannins. Sugar fermentation usually takes about seven days from start to finish, and it’s during this time that the beautiful aromas fill the winery, especially from the fruity Cabernet Franc. As is now common in our winemaking, all the ferments except Petit Verdot have extended post-Wantirna Estate spring 2021 releases ferment time on skins, with nine days for the 2019 Cabernet Sauvignon. We love the fine tannins that this treatment gives the wine and the rich fruit flavours that are extracted. The moment of truth - when we lift the lid on the ‘locked-down’ ferment - is always filled with a little apprehension, as well as excitement; not having been able to taste nor analyse the wine during that time can make a winemaker nervous. Having said that, the wines thus far have always been terrific and none of the wild ideas of the things that could go wrong are apparent! The 2019 is from a warmer year but the wine has the trademark elegance that Amelia is known for. It has terrific fruit and lovely long tannins that round the wine off beautifully as well as giving it structure and the ability to age very well.


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
    • Blueberry
    • Boysenberry
    • Herbal
  • Palate
    • Blue Fruits
    • Cassis
    • Graphite

Food Pairings

  • Pork
  • Red Meat

Critic Scores & reviews

  • Gary Walsh

    "One of my most favourite wines. Blackcurrant, blackberry, sarsaparilla/liquorice pastille, so much violet here, and spiced cedar oak. Medium-bodied, dark fruit with some redcurrant in the mix, tobacco and pencils, a little chew to gravelly tannin, fresh too, with a firm long finish. Delivers so much flavour without being heavy. Beautiful."
  • Huon Hooke

    "(2018 vintage) Excellent depth of bright red/purple colour, with a bouquet that suggests coffee grounds, mocha, gunsmoke and spicy fruit-oak interactions. Tobacco and briary notes, lovely wine. The palate is full-bodied and intense, appropriately firmly-structured and driving, with superbly tight but fine, elegant tannins that linger on the aftertaste. Another marvellous 2018 Yarra 'Bordeaux blend'."
  • James Halliday's Wine Companion

    "(2018 vintage) Predominantly cabernet sauvignon and merlot, with smaller amounts of cabernet franc and petit verdot. Classic aromas you want to see from this blend, with subtle blackcurrant, redcurrant, tobacco, mulberry, mint and just a touch of green herb and leaf. Perfectly medium bodied, the wine flows evenly along the palate, escorted by superfine tannin. The flavours really linger on the finish."
  • James Suckling

    "(2018 vintage) A medium-bodied red that has such attractively fresh redcurrant, blueberry, blackcurrant, leaf and forest-wood aromas. The palate is sleek, crisp and bright and delivers very attractively fresh red-berry flavors, amid crisp, layered and fine tannins. Holds an upbeat finish too. Drink or hold. Screw cap."

Other vintages

Love this wine? Here's a list of other vintages we have in stock if you'd like to try them as well.

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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.

Yarra Valley

The Yarra Valley is a wine region known for producing outstanding Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. The region has become a leading wine tourism destination, popular for weekend trips as it is located only an hour’s drive northeast of Melbourne.

The cool climate region has some of the oldest soils in the world, and produces terrific Chardonnays in the leaner, acid-driven style. Long gone are the days of excessively oaked and oily Chardonnays. Superb Pinot Noir is cultivated with tremendous results. Cabernet Sauvignon, Shiraz, Viognier, Sauvignon Blanc and even Sparkling wines of premium quality are also worth seeking out.

Yarra Valley is the oldest wine region in Victoria with the first vines planted in 1838 at Yering Station. Reg Egan founded the iconic Wantirna Estate in 1963, followed by Dr Bailey Carrodus in 1969 who founded equally lauded Yarra Yering in the foot of the Warramate Hills. Nowadays a fleet of new world wine makers and growers are making sure Yarra Valley stays at the forefront of Victorian wine production. Key wineries to look out for are Mayer, William Downie and Macforbes.

The region in 2009 suffered in the Black Saturday fires, with an estimated 25% of all production was impacted.

About the brand Wantirna Estate

Wantirna Estate Vineyard is located just outside of Melbourne, Victoria in a town of the same name. Founded by Reg and Bertina Egan in 1963, Wantirna Estate was the first of the new generation vineyards planted outside the region of the Yarra Valley. This was a new adventure for Reg, a Melbourne lawyer who in 1984, gave up his law practice to focus solely on viticulture and winemaking. After a vintage in Burgundy, Reg and Bertina's daughter Maryann Egan studied oenology at Charles Sturt University and is currently the head winemaker in addition to being an accomplished wine writer. Early plantings included a mixed bag of Italian and Spanish varieties, however in the 1970s, the land was replanted to focus on more familiar grape varietals such as Chardonnay and Pinot Noir for single vineyard wines and Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc and Merlot for Bordeaux blends. Much of the current Cabernets and Merlot are part of the original 1963 plantings.

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