100% Cabernet. Voyager's North Block is a gravel-rich, north east facing site, planted in 1995 by Steve James (exclusively to Cabernet from a Haughton massale selection). This site has been earmarked to become the core component of Voyager's flagship red, the Cabernet Merlot. Although separated from the original Estate vineyards by just a gravel path this is a site that James believes is out on its own in terms of quality. The wines produced from this site thus far certainly seem to back him up. The '09 offers up the very essence of Margaret River's Wallcliffe sub-region; sublimely pure blackcurrant fruit, black olive and bay laurel complexity draped over an underbelly of powdery structure. Next year Voyager will release two 100 per cent Cabernet Project wines; one from this block and the other from the Estate block plated in 1978. As interesting to compare as those wines are, this 2009 will take some beating. Harvested in small batches over a series of days, the wine was fermented naturally in open fermenters before being racked into fine-grained French oak; 60 per cent new, 40 per cent 2-year-old. The result has been a supremely classy, pure and elegant wine that should age brilliantly. It comes as little surprise to learn that the balance of fruit from this site in '09 went into Voyager's much anticipated 2009 Cabernet Merlot. This (soon to be released) wine took home James Halliday's best in class in the 2014 Australian Wine Companion. Margaret River Cabernet simply doesn't get much better than this.
97 points and included in “Best of the Best Cabernets” James Halliday’s Australian Wine Companion 2015 ... "The standard Voyager Estate cabernet is sourced from the 35-year-old Old Block, the 18-year-old North Block and a component from a Wilyabrup vineyard. This wine comes solely from the North Block, and shows why this block is regarded so highly by the Voyager Estate team. The colour, bouquet and palate are all perfect, with an ideal balance between cassis and olive/bay leaf savoury offsets. Cellar 2039.”
95 points Huon Hooke ... "Wow! This is a most impressive cabernet, displaying beautifully ripe fruit with red and dark-berry, and tobacco aromas, and benefitting from a couple of extra years bottle-age. Oak is tucked in the background and the tannins are smooth.
Now to 20 years. 13.9 per cent alcohol."
93 + points Mike Bennie and Gary Walsh, The Wine Front .. "MB: Choc-berry, nougat, tobacco, touch of leafy complexity, dash of pepper. Neat entry. Svelte, fresh-feeling fruit character with concentration of flavour and chewy tannins in tow. Some burry chew to tannin profile, but all kind of fits together well. Length is good, depth is good, satisfying bigger cabernet wine. 93+
GW: Blackberry, coconut, nougat, touch of gum and bay leaf, chocolate, perfumed. Medium bodied, ripe chocolaty tannin, acidity a little bit pushed, heaps of length and chocolaty finish. Has presence and character. A little bit showy, but very good. 93+"
95 points Andrew Graham, Australian Wine Review “...What I like most about this wine is the definition. It screams Voyager Cabernet, with a pencilly, sharply detailed nose of cedar and briar and savoury black Cabernet fruit. There is an almost regal Cabernet-ness here that is translated on the powerful, ripe, fully filled tannic palate, the style obviously quite big, yet still so varietal and plenty crisp to finish.”