We proudly present a new vintage of one of our favourite wines. Merlot 2017 is a very small production this year. It is a blend of 3 vineyards, mostly younger and it is a good representation of the vintage and what we think should be a good South African Merlot. Grapes are all grown without irrigation and yields are limited to give a fair chance of ripening. The vintage was quite dry and hot at certain times but the results are great.
We pick everything by hand and some batches we chill overnight. After destemming we have a strict sorting regime to remove all unwanted green stems by hand. This is a very slow process of only 2 tons per hour but essential to the success of this challenging grape. We crush lightly to have ± 30% whole berries in the tank. We use some open top fermentation with punch downs but we also use close tanks with a pre-cold soak and extended maceration. Skin contact can take 5 – 35 days depending of vintage. After pressing the press is kept separate and the wine spends 12 months in barrel. Of this 25 % is new. The wine is bottled with filtration.
Deep dark colour. Lovely, juicy nose with ripe berries, chocolate and some strawberry evident. A hint of toast with white, milk chocolate dominates a medium bodied palate. Soft, juicy tannins with lovely spice and a balanced lingering aftertaste. No greenness at all and quite full bodied for a Merlot. Enjoy now but with enough structure and complexity to age 4 – 6 years.