Angus Hughson
16 May 2024 | Angus Hughson

The Yin and Yang of Western Australia (May 2024)

Vinous May 2024 Angus Hughson

From The Yin and the Yang of Western Australia

By Angus Hughson

McHenry Hohnen is an absolute star in Margaret River. Today, founder Murray McHenry leads the team with assistance from Head Winemaker Jacopo Dalli Cani, among a handful of other top wineries. Dalli Cani's focus on vineyard sustainability and biodynamics has helped him weave his magic to craft stylish, subtle and age-worthy wines. The range of Chardonnays from 2022, in particular, is extraordinary.

Italian-born winemaker Jacopo Dalli Cani in McHenry Hohnen’s Hazel’s Vineyard.

2022 Burnside Vineyard Chardonnay

99 pts

This classically proportioned 2022 single vineyard Chardonnay Burnside Vineyard is a powerhouse, but needs some time to shine. Waves of nectarine, floral and musky peach skin aromas with excellent focus are beautifully integrated with young, tight French oak. An almost perfect palate follows with taut acidity and a mineral frame holding energetic citrus flavors tight through to an exceptionally long and streamlined finish.

World class Chardonnay.

2022 Hazel's Vineyard Chardonnay

96 pts

The approachable yet finely tuned 2022 Chardonnay Hazel's Vineyard draws you in with highly complex yet understated aromas of citrus flowers and peach stone against a background of gently toasty oak. Crisp and vibrant, a strong core acidity drives searing focus and mineral intensity Through to on extremely long finish. The 2022 is so young, with plenty to look forward to.

2022 Calgardup Brook Vineyard Chardonnay

93 pts

The shapely and immaculate  2022 Chardonnay Calgardup Brook Vineyard initially teases, with aromas of melon sorbet topped with crushed nuts lined with green apples and toasty oak. Excellent texture and volume of flavor follow, but it is, still wrapped very light in its shell. The overall impression, though, is seamless, and I hove no doubt it will build impressively in bottle.

2023 McHenry Hohnen Marsanne Roussane

93 pts

The 2023 Marsanne Roussanne is worth looking out for, with beautifully even and refined aromas of melon, lanolin with delicate floral and peach, plus a gentle touch of oak. Beautifully textured with a lacy grip, an ample volume of flavor sets the wine up nicely with a balanced kick of acidity to finish.

2022 McHenry Hohnen Laterite Hills Chardonnay

92 pts

This regional blend of 2022 Chardonnay, made with fruit from some cracking vineyards, delivers impressive precision of citrus and chalky aromas with subtle nougat and oak spice. It is pretty linear in shape thanks to vibrant acidity with a strong base of flavor building to a fine and detailed finish of exceptional length. The 2022 is young, light and built to enjoy over the medium term.

2022 McHenry Hohnen Sauvignon Blanc

92 pts

This generously flavored but also quite complex oak-aged and fermented 2022 Sauvignon Blanc delivers rich aromas of nectarine and guava topped with subtle dried herbs, all well integrated with a fine core of French oak boosted by savory, leesy complexity. A serious volume of upfront flavor follows, settling into a creamy package with fine acidity and balance over a lengthy finish. It's delicious now and has the integrity to hold for a Iittle while.

2023 McHenry Hohnen Sauvignon Blanc

91 pts

This expressive and well-made 2023 Sauvignon Blanc delivers generous aromas of guava and just ripe pineapple with well-matched manicured oak. Midweight with creamy acidity, this is an approachable vintage best enjoyed in the short term.

2023 Rocky Road Sauvignon Blanc Semillon

91 pts

The 2023 Sauvignon Blanc Semillon Rocky Road blend is classic but with an injection of class from the team at McHenry Hohnen. It offers up appealing melon, guava, green herb and hay aromas. A touch of barrel is also on display. Juicy and bright, there is an impressive intensity of citrus flavor, and proportioned old oak provides gentle grip and length.

2023 Rocky Road Chardonnay

90 pts

The 2023 chardonnay is approachable offering waves of elegant melon and citrus pith aromas against a background of reserved oak.

It's pretty textural and creamy in style showing the warm dry vintage but retaining balance nicely. 

2018 Rolling Stone

96 pts

The very serious 2018 Rolling Stone, a Margeret River Bordeaux blend, focuses on Cabernet Sauvignon and Malbec. Unsurprisingly for the year, it delivers powerful aromas of just-ripe blackcurrant, graphite, dried herbs end granite with o strong backing of French oak. The 2018 then jumps out of the blocks with lashings of blackberry, blackcurrant and violets, before tightening up too long, strong well defined finish. Exceptional tannins are significant yet fine - a real feature. Don't be tempted for at least another decade.

2019 Rolling Stone

94 pts

The brooding 2019 Rolling Stone offers powerful aromas of blackberry, violets, ink and dried herbs with a strong backbone of French oak. Richly flavored yet compact and controlled with muscular tannins, expressive gravel/blackberry flavors are now lifted by a touch of cedary development, suggesting this is more medium than long-term proposition.

2020 Hazel's Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon

94 pts

The classically styled 2020 Cabernet Sauvignon Hazel's Vineyard has something for everyone. It initially opens with expressive aromas of blackcurrant, dried herbs, hot rocks and a firm French oak base. Distinctly savory and structural, stony muscular tannins provide a solid base for a core of sweet, peaty blackcurrant and blackberry flavor. Length and balance are exceptional, which has set this wine up for the long haul.

2019 Hazel's Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon

94 pts

The finely tuned 2019 Cabernet Sauvignon Hazel’s Vineyard from the cooler southern McHenry Hohnen vineyards offers up impressive detail and poise with layers of gravel, turned earth and blackcurrant aromas, topped with cedary complexity. More earthy, mineral tones emerge on the palate, which is well supported by a rich vein of tannins and vibrant acidity, and then go through to a composed finish. It is a bit of a sleeper and will be in prime condition after another decade in bottle.

2022 McHenry Hohnen Tempranillo

92 pts

The 2021 Tempranillo packs a punch with its layers of old leather and tobacco pouch silting over a rich core of blackberry aromas. Good definition to follow, compact and muscular with mouth coating tannins well matched to chocolatey flavors which are a little unusual in Margaret River. The tannins in particular are firm and fine while the overall package is complex, balanced, and will age surprisingly well.

2021 McHenry Hohnen BDX

92 pts

The impactful young 2021 BDX delivers a strong well composed core of aromas with inky, violet and dried thyme aromas with a plummy richness. Great upfront impact, layers of tannins and acidity nicely intertwined with a vibrant core of dark berry flavors. It's sitting pretty right now and will be something special over the medium term.

2021 McHenry Hohnen Syrah


This unusual blend combines a 2020 single vineyard Syrah with a touch of Roussanne.  An intriguing start with its intense aromas of mulberry and blackberry is accented by spice, laced with stalky complexity and more than a touch of peach skin. It's then highly expressive with fleshy flavors of blackberry and cocoa, freshened up by aromatic florals. It's fairly seamless, too, over a long, velveteen finish


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