2006 Merlot

2006 Merlot

Alcohol 13.8%

P.H 3.82

M.L.F 100%

Cases 145

Bottled` August 13, 2007

Cooperage 100% New French oak
Grapes were hand picked on the 7th October and transferred to cold storage for over night cooling. The grapes were de-stemmed only, allowing full berries to pass through the crusher. The must was transferred to open top fermentation tank where the cooling was turned on and the temperature of the must was taken to 45 degrees to prevent the onset of fermentation.
After analysis, acid, tannin, enzymes were added to facilitate color extraction. No sulfur was added as the fruit was clean and devoid of any rot.
The must was cold soaked for a 2 week period with once a day punching of the cap to minimize any V.A development.
The must was allowed to warm up and was inoculated with D254 yeast [Bordeaux Yeast].
Fermentation took place over three days with peak temperature reaching 92 degrees. During fermentation the cap was punched down every 2 hours to facilitate color extraction.
Once the ferment was dry [measure by hydrometer] the cooling was turned on the must was macerated for a further week, extracting seed tannins.
The free run wine was transferred to tank and the skins transferred to press. We used a gentle press cycle with regular tasting of the wine to ensure we did not extract to many bitter phenolics from the skins.
The press fraction was separated from the free run fraction and was transferred to barrel.
M.L bacteria was added to initiate secondary fermentation, and was finished in one month [measure by paper chromatography] after which a sulfur addition was made and the barrels topped off. Prior to bottling the wine was run through a 2 micron filter to remove any solids; no fining or sterile filtration was done.
The wine was bottled August 13, 2007 with a free sulfur level of 55ppm.
Color – Inky, with violet hues.
Nose – Milk Chocolate, plum and dark cherry. Some subtle spices [cinnamon and clove].
Palate – Tannic at the moment, with chocolate, cedar and mocha undertones. Good front palate entry [nice acidity level], firm and ripe tannins with a long and lengthy finish. Will continue to mature over the next 5-8 years.