Ernie Els

Major Series Merlot 2018

Rich, plummy and luscious dark cherry is evident to start; balanced by notes of pipe tobacco, fresh, tilled earth, and an elegant, herbaceous tone, including buchu and bay leaf. The palate follows, full of rounded, rich, fruit flavours and cherry, dense tannins, with a chalky and dry end.

R215

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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

Rich, plummy and luscious dark cherry is evident to start; balanced by notes of pipe tobacco, fresh, tilled earth, and an elegant, herbaceous tone, including buchu and bay leaf. The palate follows, full of rounded, rich, fruit flavours and cherry, dense tannins, with a chalky and dry end. It shows the density of the vintage, balancing approachable fruit with a serious tannin undercarriage and etched granitic focus to the long finish. Medium bodied with good complexity, the 2018 vintage will evolve five to eight years in the bottle.

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Awards

Platter's Guide 2022 - 4 Stars

Technical Data

Wine of Origin: Stellenbosch

Merlot

Alc 14.59% by Vol. -R.S 2.0 g/l - T.A. 6.1 g/l - pH 3.41

Aged for 14 months in French Oak barrels.