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2012 Heytesbury

Classic in style, this barrel selection of the best Cabernet Sauvignon, Malbec and Petit Verdot from the vintage takes Heytesbury to a whole new level. 2012 is another of the nine excellent seasons Margaret River has experienced since 2007. 2012 was not just another exceptional season, but also a year of significant evolution for red winemaking at Vasse Felix, with the adoption of 100% natural yeast fermentation in our top red wines.



Tasting Notes
Colour Bright maroon with a purple hue. Nose Fresh fragrant black, red and blue berries, floral violet notes, cherry pip and pie crust meld with the earthy savoury tones of gravel stones, damp forest and a cedar steam nuance. Palate Luscious dark berries stolen from the forest explode with a taught but voluptuous sensation. The fruit is sweet and fine but the structure is long and powerful. It has super fine tannins, fresh acid and a significant, delicious and unique memory remaining.
Winemaker Notes
Winemaker's notes Harvest timing is critical to ensure flavour and tannin ripeness is perfectly balanced. The elegant fruit and savoury elements bring the most sophisticated wines that have a strong sense of place. Only when it is perfect does that parcel make it to Heytesbury. Natural and careful handling in the cellar is required while on skins to ensure preservation of fruit, individual character and perfect extraction of the finest tannins. Drained from fermenter straight to our best French oak it remains here for 18 months before the best barrels are selected for Heytesbury.
Production Notes
Varietals: 77% Cabernet Sauvignon, 16% Malbec, 7% Petit Verdot
Alcohol %
Cellaring Potential:
10+ years
Harvest Date
Mar - Apr 2012
100% French oak, 18 months (54% new, 46% 1-4 year old)
6.9 g/L
Residual Sugar:
Residual Sugar
0.67 g/L
Bottling Date
December 2013
Vintage Notes

Vintage Description

Good finishing winter rains with moderate spring conditions resulted in excellent canopy health. The summer ripening period was warm and dry with some above average heat in late January prompting an early start to harvest. The weather tempered in early February and the fruit ripening slowed to a more typical pattern resulting in a long and steady vintage. Continuous fine weather remained through to 11 April when harvest was complete for these beautiful red parcels.

2012 Heytesbury
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  • 96 Points and Top 100 Award

    The Gold Book - Rob Geddes MW

    This commendation is official recognition by Master of Wine, Robert Geddes, that it was tasted for the 31st edition of the Australian Wine Vintages and judged thanks to its consistency of quality and style over many vintages as a Gold Star wine. This places the producers of this wine among the elite of Australia's vignerons and winemakers for their reliability to achieve consistent style, furit character, flavour complexity and freshness and freshness with this wine. Wines with five gold stars can be served with pride in the company of the world's best.

  • Outstanding

    Langton's Classification

    Heytesbury, a blend of the estate's best barrels, is sourced predominantly from the original 1967 Vasse Felix plantings of Cabernet Sauvignon and Malbec. Petit Verdot, which gives perfume and structure, has been included in the wine since 2007. All vineyard blocks are fermented separately and handled gently in small-batch, open and static fermenters with the use of aeration. Maturation takes place in up to 92% new French oak for about 18 months. The proportion of new oak varies from year to year depending on the fruit weight and intensity of the varietal components. Fresh blackcurrant-pastille/ chamomile/ herb-garden aromas, plenty of fruit sweetness, loose-knit, fine, chalky tannins and underlying savoury oak typify the style.

  • 97 Points

    Wine Companion

    The icon red of Vasse Felix, a blend of cabernet sauvignon, malbec and petit verdot, bypassing merlot. The perfumed bouquet stands on its own considerable merits, but it is the implacable insistence of the blackcurrnet fruit, wrapped around the juicy malbec that lifts this wine onto another plane. Is it medium bodied, medium-to-full bodied or full bodied? It all depends on which facet you concentrate on, but for my money it's a remarkable medium bodied wine. 14.5% alc. RRP $90

  • 93 Points

    Wine Advocate

    The 2012 Heytesbury was the first vintage winemaker Virginia Willcock used only indigenous yeasts for the ferment, which she says has added "life" to the wine. The blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Malbec and Petit Verdot is indeed lively, showing vibrant notes of cassis framed by hints of menthol, vanilla and tight tannins. It's medium to full in body yet avoids any sense of jamminess or excessive weight, finishing long and fine.