94 Points
5 Stars Michael Cooper
5 Stars Raymond Chan

Super satisfying and somewhat enigmatic local red

  • Closure: Screw Cap
  • Unit: Each
  • Volume: 750ml
  • Alcohol: 14.0%
  • Grape: 40% Merlot, 40% Cabernet Sauvignon, 15% Malbec, 5% Cabernet Franc

$34.99 $30.99 elsewhere $34.99

Regions : North Canterbury

Super satisfying and somewhat enigmatic local red

In stock


40% Merlot, 40% Cabernet Sauvignon, 15% Malbec & 5% Cabernet Franc

Winery notes (2016 Vintage)
"This wine is made in the same style as the celebrated Claret from Bordeaux, using traditional methods. After being picked in May, 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 (25% new). The following summer, when the weather warmed, it underwent a natural malo-lactic (secondary) fermentation. After maturing in oak for 2 years, 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 40% Merlot, 40% Cabernet, 15% Malbec and 5% Cabernet Franc.

The wine is deep ruby in colour. Its abundant aromas suggest blackberries, dark plums, cassis and mocha, with underlying hints of vanilla, spice, cigar box and game. The palate is rich but muscular, with a backbone of ripe tannins that provide a savoury aftertaste of black olive tapenade. While the wine is full bodied, the Merlot component ensures it remains smooth and succulent, with generous fruit weight."

5 Stars Michael Cooper (2016 Vintage)
"The very impressive 2016 vintage (5*) is a blend of Merlot (40 per cent), Cabernet Sauvignon (40 per cent), Malbec (15 per cent) and Cabernet Franc (5 per cent), estate-grown in North Canterbury and matured for two years in French oak barriques (25 per cent new). Dense and youthful in colour, it's a classy young red, with concentrated, ripe blackcurrant and plum flavours, oak complexity, and lovely richness and suppleness. Best drinking 2020+. Fine value."

5 Stars & 18.5+/20 (94) Raymond Chan, May 2018 (2016 Vintage)
"Full, even, near impenetrable black-hued purple-ruby colour, youthful in appearance. The nose is elegantly concentrated with bright and vibrant primary fruit aromas of dark-red berry fruit and dark plums, harmoniously melded with soft notes of blackberries and blackcurrants, some fragrant redcurrants, lifted red floral elements and a little spice. Medium-full bodied, the palate has a refined and concentrated core of bright and lively primary fruit flavours of dark-red berryfruit, dark plums, subtle notes of black and redcurrants and fresh, whole-berry fermentation nuances. The fruit has plenty of drive and linearity, and is supported by fine-grained tannin extraction lending structure and grip. The fruit carries to an elegant, black-fruited finish. This is a refined Merlot and Cabernet based blend with ripe dark berry and plum fruit with some primary and whole berry ferment lift, on a vibrant palate with fine structure. Serve with grilled and roasted red meats and Mediterranean fare over the next 6+ years. A blend of 40% each Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon with 15% Malbec and 5% Cabernet Franc, the fruit from vines over 30 y.o., largely ungrafted, and indigenous yeast fermented to 14.0% alc., the wine aged 2 years in 25% new French oak barriques."

92/100 Cameron Douglas MS, June 2018 (2016 Vintage)
"Attractive, bold and enticing bouquet with an abundance of dark red plum and blackberry aromas; dark spices and toasty wood smoke aromas add complexity and muscle. Dry, firm textures, youthful, ripe and loaded with flavour. Dark plums, dark berries, an abundance of dark berry of the forest flavours. Medium+ weight with firm tannins and acidity to match. Plenty of length and finish. A wine still developing and finding balance. Best from late 2019 through 2026."

92/100 Gary Walsh, The Wine Front, June 2018 (2016 Vintage)
"Spice, dusting of pepper, blackberry and plum, quite a bit of spicy cedar oak on top. Medium bodied, tobacco, red and black fruit, grainy tannin pushing through on the finish, a little more plush to close, with raspberry tea perfume trailing. Much personality. Enjoy this a fair bit."

92/100 James Suckling, October 2018 (2016 Vintage)
"Dark, moist earth and ripe plums with roasting herbs laced throughout. This has richness and fullness on the palate with plump plums holding very deep, fleshy and long. Drink in 2020."

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