The grapes were machine-harvested in early May, once the flavour potential was maximised. The grapes were destemmed into a number of small open-top fermenters. The must was inoculated immediately with selected yeast strains and fermented dry with temperatures peaking at around 30ºC. The wine was drained to mostly French oak barriques of different ages and coopers. Malolactic fermentation was carried out in barrel and after several months of maturation the winemaker blended the two vineyard sites, different coopers and oak ages to craft this Stoneleigh Merlot.
Aroma and Palate
The wine has a dark, plummy hue.
The aroma is fragrant with Black Doris plum and dark forrest berry aromas.
The oak provides subtle smokey mocha notes that are well integrated with the fruit.
The palate is rich, with ripe berry fruit flavours, fleshy textural weight and lingering, fine and silky tannins.
Cellaring and Food Matching
This wine may be enjoyed now, but will continue to develop with careful cellaring for up to four years.
It is best enjoyed as an accompaniment to succulent red meat dishes such as spring lamb, game and roast beef served with dark sauces