Merlot Cabernet 2017
Favourable weather over flowering resulted in an excellent fruit set. The subsequent warm summer then allowed the grapes to ripen beautifully. Naturally smaller bunches present among these varieties meant the fruit was harvested in April at optimal ripeness.
The Harvest and Winemaking
This wine is made in the same style as the celebrated Claret from Bordeaux, using traditional methods. After being picked in April, the grapes began fermentation naturally in stainless steel tanks. During this process the juice was regularly drained and sprayed back over the cap of floating grape skins (rather than plunging), to ensure a perfect tannin balance was extracted from the fruit. The wine was then gently pressed off and put into French oak barriques (10% new). The following summer, when the weather warmed, it underwent a natural malo-lactic (secondary) fermentation. After maturing in oak for 18 months, the various batches were then carefully blended in varying portions to produce the most complex and balanced wine possible. The finished product is a blend of approximately 50% Merlot, 40% Cabernet Sauvignon, 5% Malbec and 5% Cabernet Franc.
It is deep ruby in appearance with aromas of dark fruit, such as black currents, plums and boysenberries. Layered beneath there are also hints of tobacco, liquorice and cloves. While the wine is full bodied, the Merlot component ensures it remains smooth and succulent on the palate, with generous fruit weight and soft velvety tannins.