Thompson Estate is widely regarded as one of the best wineries in the Wilyabrup region, but it is one that, until our most recent foray to the South West, the FWO had not visited – although we have both tasted the wines often at wine shows and have always been impressed. To address this terrible oversight of never having visited, after we had finished our delightful lunch at Wills Domain, and heading back to Margaret River, we did a quick detour and arrived at the door to find it closed except for prearranged visitors. After a little consternation, we called the number on the sign and one of the staff members on hand, Fran, obligingly opened up for us and we were able to have a taste of some of the wines on offer – and purchased a dozen to offset the inconvenience of our unannounced arrival – it was no inconvenience to us to buy them as they were all excellent drops! This will become one of our “musts” when next we are down that way.
The winery itself is a little understated compared to some of the wineries around Margaret River, but has, we understand, won awards for its architecture. In any event, the tasting area is in the barrel room so visitors can experience the heady aroma of fermenting wine as they taste the wines on display.
Another interesting aspect of the vineyard are sculptures by Peter Lundberg who spent time in 2014 as sculptor in residence and recently won, for a sculpture that had been on display at the estate, the award for best sculpture at the Bondi Sculpture by the Sea festival.
Also in the tasting room, staring somewhat disconsolately at a wall, is one of the cows that took part in the Margaret River Cow Parade in 2010 – Cattle Chosen (Yulika) by Louise Elscot.
Anyway, to the wines that we tasted, purchased and reviewed…..
2013 Four Chambers Sauvignon Blanc Semillon
This wine of wonderful clarity exhibits aromas of stone fruit, hints of passionfruit and gooseberry. On the palate the Semillon balances the luscious fruit of the Sauvignon Blanc, giving a fine citrus edge with good acid further balancing the wine. 91
2012 Thompson Estate Chardonnay
Straw green in colour, it exhibits a bouquet brimming with stone fruit aromas and notes of citrus. The palate is creamy, with toasty oak characteristics, and has an abundance of fruit flavours, carrying to a long finish. It is beautifully balanced and is an excellent example of Margaret River chardonnay. 95
2014 Four Chambers Pinot Noir Rose
This has a pale salmon colour, with strawberry and rose petal notes on the nose. The palate is soft, with lovely fruit flavours, but finishes quite dry. It is perfectly suited to summer drinking and a great food wine. 92
Thompson Estate Cuvee Rose
Pale peach in colour, this has lovely fine, sustained bubbles, with elements of apple and pear on the nose. The palate is creamy, with hints of strawberry and raspberry. It has a soft and delicate mousse. It finishes crisp, dry and long. It is excellent current drinking, with the capacity to develop over the next two to three years. 91
2010 Thompson Estate Cabernet Sauvignon
This is dark red in colour, with plums and herbal aromas on the nose, and with hints of violets and tobacco. The palate lives up to the nose, with red berry flavours abounding, background notes of mint and eucalypt, and fine tannins, contributing to a silky, elegant finish. 95
2012 Locum Cabernet Merlot
Deep red in colour, this wine has an abundance of red current and mulberries on the nose, with notes of mint. On the palate it is well balanced, with the oak and fine tannins complementing the fruit. It has a nice sustained finish. 92
A Cabernet Merlot blend, this has a rich crimson colour, with excellent clarity. On the nose are elements of blackcurrant, raspberry with background notes of violets and mint. The palate is rich, well balanced, with some spicy elements on the mid palate. It has good tannins, with a long satisfying finish. 93
For explanation of wine rating points see: http://perthcafeculture.com.au/about/