Ernie Els

Major Series Merlot 2017

This vintage has all of the hallmarks of a classic Merlot, with ripe plums and earthy notes, supported by a core of minerality. It’s fleshed out with ripe strawberry, forest underfloor and a hint of chocolate.

R180

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Viticulture

The Merlot vineyards grow on the warm, north-facing slopes of the Helderberg region within the Stellenbosch appellation. With an altitude of approximately 250 metres above sea level, together with the cooling influence of the Atlantic Ocean, the ripening period can be extended, resulting in wines with phenolic ripeness.

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Viniculture

The hand-picked bunches arrive at the winery in the morning. The bunches are sorted, destemmed, after which the berries are sorted again to ensure that only the ripe berries go to the tank. Whole berries are fermented in open top tanks as well as in barrels. Intermittent pump-overs and punch downs ensure a balance between flavour, colour and tannin extraction from the skins. All ferments are meticulously monitored during fermentation to ensure that all the natural aromas and flavours are preserved and highlighted as required. After primary fermentation some batches will be left on the skins for extended maceration as required. The batches are pressed and transferred to a combination of old and new oak for maturation. Each batch of Merlot is maturated separately (micro-vinified) in oak barrels before blending and eventual bottling

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Tasting Notes

All the hallmarks of a classic Merlot with ripe plums and earthy notes supported by a core of minerality and fleshed out with ripe strawberry, forest underfloor, hint of chocolate, and a deepening of dark black berry laced with a hint caramel and oak spice. The savoury palate is coated in sweet attractive oak with distinct salty edge. Medium bodied, fresh yet serious with good line of acidity and clean to end.

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Awards

Platter's - 4

Technical Data

94% Merlot, 5% Cabernet Franc,

Alc 14.76% by Vol. -R.S 3 g/l

Aged for 14 months in French Oak barrels.