A rich, full bodied and complex Merlot. Aromas of wild blackberry and ripe plum combine with leather, espresso coffee and a hint of spice. The silky smooth palate is layered with ripe dark berries, damson plums and dark chocolate and leads to a long, persistent finish.
Saint Clair is owned by viticulture pioneers Neal and Judy Ibbotson who planted their first vines in 1978. They originally supplied their grapes to local wineries, but established the Saint Clair Family Wine Estate in 1994 to produce their own wines. The Saint Clair name originated from the vineyard property – first settled by the Sinclair family. Sinclair is a derivation of the original French Saint-Clair. They own 160 hectares of vineyards in 10 different Marlborough locations.. read more
Made from 100% Merlot, the fruit was sourced from a single vineyard from low-yielding vines within the Gimblett Gravels region of Hawke’s Bay - these free-draining alluvial soils are particularly suited to red grape varieties, and the vineyard site has ideal ripening conditions for achieving the full aromatic profile and tannin structure that Merlot can give. The fruit was harvested in the cool of the evening at maximum flavour maturity and ripeness. The grapes were de-stemmed and underwent a cold soak for five days to help extract the maximum flavour and enhance the colour stability. Inoculated with specialised yeasts and during fermentation was both hand-plunged up to four times daily and pumped over the skins to help with extraction. The young was kept on skins and tasted daily until the desired level of extraction and balance were achieved, then gently pressed. Once settled it was racked to 26% new and 74% seasoned French oak barrels to undergo the malolactic fermentation. After aging on light lees, the wine was blended and fined for bottling.