"The wines made here reflect their origins and regionality

and are consistently among the finest from the region.

The cabernet reaches exceptional heights”

Ray Jordan, The West Australian Wine Guide 2017


A unique wine from the 40+ year-old, low-yielding bush vines of our original Estate Vineyard. It is Australia's leading example of this bold and generous variety.

Vintage Notes

Zinfandel 2012

Zinfandel 2012

Introduced to the Estate Vineyard from California in 1974, Zinfandel is a particularily demanding variety to manage both in the vineyard and the winery. The resulting unique and hedonistically rich wine makes all the hard work worthwhile and as such the Cape Mentelle Zinfandel has developed something of a "Cult" following for lover of such a style.

Vibrant mulberry.
Ripe berries, plums and rhubarb with Cherry Ripe and a hint of ages tobacco.
Opulent and rich with an abundance of plush ripe cherries and plums and some cinnamon spice. Although powerful the wine also exhibits restraint in its savoury tannin structure and long silky length sure to provide enjoyment for a couple of decades to come.
100% zinfandel.
20 years.
Food Pairing Notes
A fat slice of Schwarzwälder Kirschtorte (Black forest cake).
The Vineyard
Cape Mentelle’s Zinfandel was planted in 1974 on a ridge of free draining lateritic gravel on an east west row orientation to minimise the affects of strong westerly sea breezes. Traditionally planted to low density bush vines this vineyard requires fastideous attention to detail to ensure only the best quality fruit is produced.
The Season
The 2012 vintage was noted by above average summer temperatures and average rainfall. What resulted was a steady ripening period leading up to a hot January and an early start to the harvest. Mild temperatures throughout February and March ensured fruit harvested in perfect condition and completed by early April prior to heavy late April rains.
The zinfandel was handpicked in the first week of March. After destemming and individual berry sorting, the must was allowed to soak at cool temperatures for several days prior to fermentation. The wine steadily fermented to dryness prior to basket pressing directy to large oak vats and barriques for malolactic fermentation and maturation. We used 25% new French oak barrels for a total of 16 months. The wine was bottled in October 2013.
14.5% alcohol, 5.8 g/l total acidity, 3.53 pH.

Wine Business Monthly - Wines of the Year 2014

Tyson Stelzer

An impressively focused Zinfandel capturing all the black fruit, tar and understated Christmas cake exoticism of this variety, yet more consummate control and focus than ever.

The Wine Front

Campbell Mattinson

A long, long time ago Cape Mentelle was the second winery I ever visited in my Australian wine journey. I arrived by bike, ex a backpackers hostel in Margaret River. That would have been, probably, 1991-ish. One hectare of zinfandel vines were growing at Cape Mentelle then and had been (at the time) for about 15 years. They’ve now been growing there 40-odd years.
Cape Mentelle zin is a very good wine nowadays. The burly days are well over, though of course it still gives as good as it gets. It’s bold but tidy. Tar, raspberry, tobacco, raspberry and an assortment of dried herbs. Sweet, chocolatey oak adds a gentle spruce. Not hard to like, shall we say.

The Australian Wine Annual 2015

Jeremy Oliver

Very elegant, reserved and almost non-zin-like, with a delicate, fragrant, spicy and faintly confectionary bouquet of blueberries, blackberries and briar knit with sweet cedar/vanilla oak and backed by nuances of mint and a fait meatiness. It's plush, smooth and polished, with a luscious, faintly spirity presence of  chocolate, mocha, plums and prunes extending seamlessly long and warm over a firm, velvety spine of drying tannins towards a finely balanced finish of surprising intensity.

Top 100 Australian Wine Vintages 2015

Rob Geddes

Cape Mentelle Zinfandel 2012 was judged one of the top 100 wines in over 3500 tasted for the 32nd edition of the Australian Wine Vintages.

Download all reviews for this vintage as PDF
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Licensee: Cape Mentelle Vineyards Ltd. License number: 6180025494. Type of License: Producer's License