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1998 Cape Mentelle Trinders Vineyard Cabernet Merlot
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- Closure: Cork
Notes sourced from Cape Mentelle.
The fruit for this wine are sourced from the estate's Trinders Vineyard and three long term growers within the Margaret River region, The soils in the majority of these vineyards are comprised of laterite gravel loam over sandy clay sub-soil. Ideal spring weather ensured a good bud burst and crop set with mild weather, minimal wind and adequate rain continuing up until November. The next three months were dry with warm daytime temperatures, wild nights and cooling afternoon sea breezes -perfect ripening weather. Vintage started well, with most of the white varieties harvested before 100mm of rain fell. Mild but humid weather continued, followed by late summery conditions which allowed us to achieve excellent fruit ripeness.The first batch of fruit for this blend was some Merlot and Cabernet harvested at 24.5 brix on March 17th. The final batch was picked at 23.8 brix on April 3rd. Generally the grapes exhibited good flavours and moderate tannin and acid levels around 6.0 gram/litre, reflecting the high level of ripeness achieved.Light crushing was followed by a warm (28 - 30C) fermentation before cooling down to 25C for the completion of fermentation. Regular pumping over for colour, flavour and tannin extraction occurred during the vigorous phase of ferment. Batches were treated individually with skin contact ranging from 4 to 28 days. The wine was matured for 18 months in French and American oak barriques, 35 per cent of which were new. The final blend of 75 per cent Cabernet Sauvignon and 25 per cent Merlot was bottled in November 1999.This year's Cabernet Merlot is aromatic with chocolate mint, tobacco and blackcurrants with cedar and roasted coffee in the background. The palate is generous and richly flavoured with well integrated tannins and a lingering finish. A little softer and more supple than previous vintages, this wine is ready for drinking now but will age gracefully for the next 5-6 years.Analysis: 13.7%, alcohol; 6.7g/l, acidity; pH 3.59.