2020 'Annabelle' Crement de Rose


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‘Annabelle’ is a vintage sparkling rosé crafted in the Crémant de Bordeaux style using full Methode Traditionelle . This vintage was a blend of 2020 and 2017 86:14 Cabernet Sauvignon with a small quantity of Merlot and Petit Verdot from 2017. Well balanced with a crisp acidity, nice delicate length; fruit driven yet savoury. Notes of strawberry & cherry ripe, with a hint of lime & rose petal.

By Richard & Will de Beaurepaire

HERITAGE Named after one of our granddaughters. This sparkling wine will be happy and full of energy.


The vineyard is located above Rylstone in the Central Ranges GI of NSW (40km southeast of Mudgee, 70km northeast of Bathurst). It was planted in 1998 by Richard & Janet de Beaurepaire, with a mixture of Bordeaux, Rhône, and Burgundy varieties with the intention of selling most of the grapes whilst organically growing wine production. The decision to plant the vineyard at this location over other established winegrowing regions (including family winemaking operations in the Yarra Valley) was due to the similarity of the terroir to Burgundy – the home of the de Beaurepaire family. The vineyard is in a mountain valley, 150 kilometres from the coast in the Great Dividing Range. It is planted on North facing slopes rising from the Cudgegong River to an altitude of 650m. Geologically, the vineyard is planted on an Ordovician-era (450 MY ago) coral reef with shallow sandy and sandy-loam soils on limestone. The limestone was mined nearby until recently by Kandos Cement. The altitude, distance from ocean and poor heat retention of the soil and limestone, creates an inland continental climate as cool as Central Otago in New Zealand and Tasmania in Australia during the growing season with extreme diurnal variation – late Sept/Oct Budburst, Jan/Feb Veraison and March/April Harvest.


Cabernet (CW44 Clone) from B Block, Petit Verdot (G7V1 Clone) from C Block, Merlot (D3V14 Clone) from B Block all with an average vine age of 20 years.

Vintage Conditions: Budburst was on 7 October 2019. 2020 was the culmination of the worst drought in recorded history. Water management was absolutely critical to deal with heat stress and ensure supply. Yields were low due to the heat and lack of water, and ripening was accelerated. A difficult vintage.

Harvest: Individually selected parcels of Cabernet Sauvignon were machine harvested on the evening of 23 March 2020 with an average baumé of 12.0. Average yield was 7t/ha (~38hl/ha).

VINIFICATION The fruit was 100% de-stemmed & very gently pressed to retain premium free-run juice (the cuvée). Primary fermentation at 15 degrees was conducted in steel tank using native (“wild”) yeasts, delivering beautiful primary fruit characters. The wine underwent a full malo-lactic fermentation to produce excellent mouthfeel & richness. Very light fining. Secondary fermentation on lees lasted 10 months.

AGING The wine was left on lees for 10 months before disgorgement & completion in May. Dosage 3g/litre.

Analysis: Alcohol: 12.0%, pH 3.1, TA 7.4g/l and VA of 0.2g/L.


Well balanced with a crisp acidity, nice delicate length; fruit driven yet savoury and thirst quenchingly dry. On the nose, hints of toast, lime and rose petal leading to vibrant acidity, a creamy texture and notes of fresh strawberry and cherry ripe on the palate.


As an apéritif, or pair with flavoursome cheeses, fresh seafood (sushi, smoked salmon), leaner meats (duck, chicken and pork) and spicy dishes. Perhaps a vegan soft cheese alternative, seaweed pearl caviar and smokey vegan salmon or a mixed vegetable, sweet chilli and garlic sauce stir-fry served with sticky rice.


Cellaring Potential: 10 to 20 years

Serving Temperature: 8 degrees C / 47 degrees F

VARIETAL MIX: 96.5% Cabernet Sauvignon, 3.5% Merlot

ALCOHOL: 12.0%

GI: Central Ranges (Rylstone), NSW, Australia