Regions > South Australia> Limestone Coast Zone > Coonawarra region

: Banks Thargo


Banks Thargo

Racecourse Rd, Penola, 5277

Cellar Door: Not

Ph: (08) 8737 2338

Banks Thargo Wines is one of the smaller producers in the region and has no cellar door.

The vineyard surrounds the Penola racecourse. The vineyards were established in 1980 with three generations of the Kidman family helping out.

The Kidmans have roots here dating back to the 1850s and this property was bought back in 1919 for Broken Hill pastoralist Thomas Kidman’s retirement. His second son, Banks Thargomindah (hence the unusual name) made the decision to go down the wine-making road.

There are 22 ha of Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot, mainly contract growing with a small amount set aside for the family brand. Emma Bowen makes the Cabernet Sauvignon, while Derek Hooper makes the Merlot.

Tasting Notes

There are three types of Tasting notes:

(W) Notes from the winery (blurbs from bottle)

(GXY) Notes from a GenXY wine reviewer

(G) Notes from GenXY's Tasting events (collective opinions)

Banks Thargo Cabernet Sauvignon 2013

Purchased: Not ($23)

Drink: 2025

(GXY) Tasting: Mar 2017, Gold Medal at Limestone Coast Wine Show 2015, plush and intense cassis, black cherry and ripe plums but the Coonawarra didnít suffer from the excessive heat that affilicted much of South Australia in 2013, violet florals ad a touch of eucalyptus, savoury and earthy medium-full bodied palate with cedar/dark chocolate on the persistent finish from the French and Russian oak (****)

Banks Thargo Merlot 2013

Purchased: Not ($20)

Drink: 2019

(GXY) Tasting: †Aug: 2016, fleshy plum and mulberry with violet florals and white pepper notes, plump and medium bodied with grainy tannins and mocha-cedar oak (***1/2)

Banks Thargo Cabernet Sauvignon 2012

Purchased: Not ($22)

Drink: 2024

(GXY) Tasting: Aug 2014, Gold Medal at Royal Melbourne Wine Show 2013, fragrant, plush and medium-full bodied blackcurrant and mulberry with eucalypt and violet notes, an earthy/olive finish, chassis of grainy and ripe tannins, the French and Russian oak brings lots of cedar, caramel and dark chocolate, firm acid structure (****)

Banks Thargo Merlot 2012

Purchased: Not ($19)


(GXY) Tasting: Aug 2014, Trophy at Sydney Royal Wine Show 2014, juicy and fleshy redcurrant and plum with violet and pepper notes, open and plump with loose knit grainy tannins and a touch of mocha-coffee oak (***1/2)

Banks Thargo Cabernet Sauvignon 2010

Purchased: Not ($23)

Drink: 2020

(GXY) Tasting: Aug 2013, fragrant and leafy mulberry and blackcurrant pastille with mint and violet notes, medium bodied with a sweet plumcake entry, savoury/earthy mid-palate, balanced spicy cedar/caramel oak, chalky tannins (****)

Banks Thargo Nineteen Nineteen Chardonnay 2012

Purchased: Not ($?)

Drink: 2014

(GXY) Tasting: Aug 2013, debut release, straightforward fruit-driven style showing fresh limes, apples and peaches with some creaminess on the mid-palate, the oaking is subtle, crisp citrus acid finish (***)

Banks Thargo Merlot 2010

Purchased: Not ($19)

Drink: 2015

(GXY) Tasting: Aug 2013, plumpish redcurrant and plums with eucalypt and spice notes, slightly forward with open knit dusty tannins and restrained mocha-coffee oak (***)

Banks Thargo Cabernet Sauvignon 2008

Purchased: Not ($22)


(GXY) Tasting: Aug 2012, fragrant and richly fruited cassis, mulberry and blackberry with mint and violet notes, sweet entry but becomes more minerally and savoury on back half, spicy oak support with finely structured tannin, I was surprised that it has 15% alcohol as it seems such a well balanced wine at the moment, alcohol heat may be more of an issue as the primary fruit fades but will reward medium term cellaring (****)

Banks Thargo Cabernet Sauvignon 2006

Purchased: Not ($21)

Drink: 2014

(GXY) Tasting: Aug 2011, starting to mellow with bottle age, slightly tarry mulberry and cassis with some plum-cake mid-palate sweetness and menthol, savoury and medium-full bodied palate has good depth with a streak of minerality and persistent dusty tannins (***1/2)

Banks Thargo Coonawarra Merlot 2004

Purchased: Not ($15)

Drink: 2010

(GXY) Tasting: Aug 2008, brash and ripe style showing dark plum and mulberry with varietal spiciness, medium bodied with overt cedar-vanilla and cinnamon inputs from the French oak, grainey tannins with a savoury finish (***)

Banks Thargo Coonawarra Cabernet Sauvignon 2004

Purchased: Not ($18)

Drink: 2009

(GXY) Tasting: Aug 2006, cassis and blackcurrant with mint and liquorice aromas, savoury medium-bodied palate with assertive cedar-vanilla oak, fine tannins (***1/2)

Banks Thargo Coonawarra Merlot 2003

Purchased:Not ($15)

Drink: 2007

(GXY) Tasting: Aug 2006, sweet nose showing redcurrant and plum with some pepper notes, palate seems rather stewed, smoky vanilla oak, grippy tannins (***)