This distinguished Cabernet Merlot is made from ultra-premium grapes (56% Cabernet Sauvignon, 39% Merlot and a splash of Cabernet Franc) grown on low-yielding vines in our Mere Road Vineyard, situated in the renowned stony soils of the Gimblett Gravels district within Hawkes Bay. The Cabernet Sauvignon was handpicked on May 5th and Merlot on April 22nd at an average Brix of 23.1.
The grapes were destemmed, retaining whole berries, before transferring to open top fermenters as separate parcels for cold-soaking. After six days, selected yeasts were inoculated to initiate fermentation, and the resultant cap was plunged twice daily. A post-ferment maceration regime over 10 days optimised the tannin structure prior to pressing off skins. The wine was then transferred to quality French oak barrels (30% new for the Cabernet Sauvignon, and 47% new for the Merlot) for 16 months aging. The wine was judiciously blended, lightly fined with egg white and pad filtered prior to bottling on 13th October 2011 under Stelvin screwcap.
This opulent and classic blend presents the very best from our Mere Road vineyard. It exudes a medley of berry fruits pervading the palate, with white pepper over mocha and cigar box notes. Exceptionally smooth, it is immediately enjoyable and will cellar superbly.
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