2013 Cabernet Merlot

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Deep red in colour, the nose is dense with complex dark cassis, and blueberry fruit, integrated with fine cedary oak. The palate is rich and structured, with dense fruit and fine grain tannins.

Tasting Note

The Balnaves Coonawarra Vineyard was established in 1975, and is situated at the southern end of the Coonawarra Terra Rossa strip. The family, which has been associated with the district since 1855, remains fully committed to a high level of ‘hands-on” involvement.

Vintage 2013 was generally mild with one hot period. Blended from Cabernet Sauvignon (82%) principally from our Walker, Quarry and Dead Morris vineyards, with Merlot (18%) from Avery and Rise. Walker Cabernet, the largest component, was harvested using berry sorting technology prior to ferment. Matured for 16 months in new (50%) and used French oak prior to bottling in October 2014.

Deep red in colour, the nose is dense with complex dark cassis, and blueberry fruit, integrated with fine cedary oak. The palate is rich and structured, with dense fruit and fine grain tannins. This wine will reward careful cellaring and we recommend decanting before drinking.

Technical Information

VINTAGE:2013
HARVESTED:14th – 28th March 2013
VARIETY:82% Cabernet Sauvignon, 18% Merlot
ALC/VOL:14.5%
TOTAL ACID:6.41g/L
pH:3.46
CELLARING:4-10 years

Reviews

“An 82/18% blend from three cabernet and two merlot vineyards; matured for 16 months in French oak (50% new). Excellent crimson-purple; the bouquet is aromatic and inviting, the palate with a balance of blackcurrant, mulberry, black olive and herbs, oak adding its own flavour as a bonus.” Drink to 2028

Author: James Halliday
Publication: Wine Companion 2016
Date: August 2015
Rating: 94 points
  • 2012

    Vintage 2012 was mild and warm with very low yields. Blended from Cabernet Sauvignon (91%) principally from our Avery and Vortmann vineyards, with Merlot (9%) from Rise and Silage. All the fruit for this wine was berry sorted prior to ferment. Matured for 17 months in new and used French oak from Seguin Moreau, Saury and Dargaud and Jaegle prior to bottling in October 2013. Deep red in colour, the nose is plush with round blackberry, elderberry and cassis fruits and toasty oak. The palate is lighter bodied, with soft dark plum, cassis fruit and fine grain tannins.

    Drink or Hold.

  • 2011

    Blended from Cabernet Sauvignon (85%) with Merlot (11%). Deep red in colour, the nose is complex with dark blackberry, elderberry and cassis fruit and a touch of olive. The palate is medium bodied, with a taught leaner structure dark fruit and firm tannin. The finish is long and textured with fine grainy grape tannins.

    Hold.

  • 2010

    Deep red in colour, the nose is rich with perfectly ripened dark blackberry, elderberry and cassis fruit. The palate is medium bodied, but intense with coffee and vanilla characters adding to the dark fruit. The finish is long and textured with fine, grainy grape tannins.

  • 2009

    Medium – dark red colour, purple hue.
    Composed of Cabernet Sauvignon from Avery and Vortmann vineyards (72%) with an unusually high Merlot component (28%) for this vintage from Rise and Avery Blocks.
    The nose in complex, with a cooler vintage look fresh cassis with chocolate mint aromas and cedary French oak. The palate is medium bodied, dark elderberry fruit and textured tannin structure, more elegant than previous vintages.
    Drink or Hold.

  • 2008

    2008 Vintage was hot and dry and this wine reflects this with a riper cassis and blackberry flavour profile and just a touch of liquorice. Blended principly from our Walker and Quarry Cabernet Sauvignon blocks (83%) with the Merlot coming from our single-stake trained vines in our Rise vineyard (17%). Maturation was for 16 months in 50 % new Troncais-Jupilles French oak from St Martin. An excellent Cab Merlot from a vintage which is ripe and intense but retains medium body and balance.
    Hold.

  • 2007

    The 2007 Cabernet Merlot is dark red in colour with a purple tinge. Very complex nose comprising seaweed, dark berry, fruit cake, cassis and toasty vanillin oak. Now completely integrated. Medium bodied with rich dark fruit and firm grippy tannins. A cooler expression of this wine reflecting the vintage, with very low Merlot content (6.6%), and a lean/tight structure. Will reward further cellaring.
    The first Balnaves Cabernet Merlot bottled under screwcap.
    Hold.

  • 2006

    The 2006 Cabernet Merlot is deep red with a red tinge. Fleshy nose of dark cassis fruit, fine complex leather and spice notes and integrated vanillin oak. The palate is big and rich with ripe red and black berry flavours, some sweet tarry notes and a sweet berry lingering finish. A ripe year with a small crop and lovely perfume and balance.
    Procork.
    Drink or Hold.

  • 2005

    The 2005 Cabernet Merlot is incredibly dense in colour, red tinge. Rich and powerful nose dense fruit still somewhat closed. Difficult to describe nose, but very harmonious, balanced and layered with no particular characters standing out. The palate is again rich and very full bodied with fully ripe sweet earth tannins. An outstanding vintage in retrospect, which is developing very slowly.
    Procork.
    Drink or Hold.

  • 2004

    The 2004 Cabernet Merlot is deep red colour red/brick tinge. Complex nose showing leafy-seaweed cabernet characters again reflecting the very late ripening of the 2004 vintage. The nose also shows some bottle age aromas of cedar and soy sauce. The palate is medium bodied with tannins softened from bottle age and sweet earthy Coonawarra characters developing.
    This wine is at a nice stage to drink with both primary fruit and some bottle age development.
    Cork.
    Drink or Hold.

  • 2002

    The 2002 Balnaves Cabernet Merlot is deep red in colour with bright purple tinge. It has a big nose that is fleshy damson plum fruit and a touch of leaf but appealingly soft. The palate is soft and fleshy with sweet cassis fruit and liquorice with some tarry and malt notes.
    Drink now.

  • 2001

    The 2001 Balnaves Cabernet Merlot is deep red in colour with a red tinge. Lifted nose with liquorice, cassis fruit, subtle oak and cream de cassis notes. The palate is medium weight with lean cassis fruit and good length. It is still very tight and closed, needs time to soften.
    Drink now.

  • 2000

    The 2000 Balnaves Cabernet Merlot is deep red in colour with a red tint. The nose is sweet with ripe concentrated fruit from the hot summer, roasted nuts and wild blackberry notes. More open and attractive than previous two vintages at this stage. The palate is complex with malt and coffee notes and blackberry fruit. The structure is fine and long. Drinking well now the 2005 are maturing early.
    Drink now and hold.

  • 1999

    The 1999 Cabernet Merlot is deep red in colour with a purple tint. The nose is ripe with cassis, fleshy dark prunes very good. The palate is soft with fleshy dark berry fruit and chocolate. It is tight and sinewy, good structure and length. Solid wine.
    Drink now and will hold.

  • 1998

    The 1998 Balnaves Cabernet Merlot has deep red in colour and a red tint. The nose is big with sweet with ripe cassis fruit, a touch of cedar and vanilla and damson plum . The palate is rich and solid with big sweet fruit round and soft a very strong wine still evolving solid and rich.
    Drink now.

  • 1997

    The 1997 Cabernet Merlot is mid red in colour with a brick tinge. The nose is lean with black olives, dark fruit, integrated with oak and some linen bottle age characters. The palate is lean with a greener backbone of fruit but still has good cassis mint and malty notes Good length.
    Drink now.

  • 1996

    The 1996 Cabernet Merlot is mid red in colour with a brick tint. The nose is lifted with blackberry fruit mocha oak and dark chocolate. The palate is soft and sweet with good weight and length. Great drinking now.
    Drink now and will hold.

  • 1994

    The 1994 Cabernet Merlot is medium red in colour with a brick tinge. The nose is closed with slightly mushroomy notes with sappy, tarry leafy note some cassis still evident. The palate is showing oak dominating and gripping tanning.
    Past its best.

  • 1993

    The 1993 Cabernet Merlot is light to medium red in colour with a brick tinge. The nose is lean, lifted and very leafy with vanillan and sappy notes. The palate is developed and lean but still soft.
    Past its best.

  • 1991

    The 1991Cabernet Merlot is light/ mid red with a brick tinge. The nose has good intensity with complex mushroom and slight leaf and coconut oil notes. It is still quite fresh with dark fruit and old furniture. The palate is still good and showing tarry jammy fruit and complex sweet soy. At it’s best. Starting to dry out on the finish.
    Drink now.

  • 1990

    The 1990 Balnaves Cabernet Merlot is mid red in colour with a brick tinge. The nose is complex showing savory aromas, blackcurrant, soy sauce, ink, cedar and cigar box notes. The palate is slightly sweet fruit with a touch of soy and olive. Good length.
    Drink now – won’t improve.

  • Have you tried our 2015 The Blend? The ONLY wine in Coonawarra to feature in James Halliday's Top 100 wines! Why not come and try some today.. #balnavesofcoonawarra #theblend #coonawarra #jameshalliday #top100wines
  • Miss Tilly checking out the bunch counts in the lovely sun shine! 
#balnavesofcoonawarra #coonawarra #jackrussell #winery #bunchcounts
  • Beautiful views here at Balnaves! 
#balnavesofcoonawarra #coonawarra #summer #seesa
  • Be sure to pop in today for a wine tasting, and why not get a picnic box and glass of wine to enjoy on the deck or on the grass! See you from 11:30am

#balnavesofcoonawarra #openinghours #cellardoor #coonawarra #saturdayvibes #weekend #winetasting
  • Its time for wine, have a great Friday night from the Balnaves team! 
#balnavesofcoonawarra #timeforwine #fridaynightvibes #weekendishere #coonawarra #seesa #wine
  • We would love to see your photos from your visit here.. Please give us a hashtag in your next picture! 
#balnavesofcoonawarra #cellardoor #coonawarra #winesa
  • Tickets are on sale now! 
Wine, friends & comedy - a perfect combination to a guaranteed great day out in Coonawarra! 
#Repost @grapesofmirth
・・・
Coonawarra, we love you! You’re like no other wine region - one big happy (possibly dysfunctional) family. To prove it, at our January event, we have not one, but twelve wine producers pouring their amazing wines!
There would be no show without these wonderfully funny people @dilrukj @dave_thorno @calbowilson @thefionaoloughlin @nathvalvo @merrickwatts
.
Tickets on sale tomorrow at 9am - Link in Bio
.
Thank you to our wine peeps @coonawarra_wine @rymillwinery @raidisestate @majellawines @hollickestates @penleyestate @balnaves_of_coonawarra @brandslaira @digiorgiofamilywines @patrickofcoonawarra @blok_coonawarra @koonara @whistlepostwines
.
.
#grapesofmirth #comedy #standupcomedy #wine #coonawarra #coonawarrawine #limestonecoast #penola #drinkeatlaugh #winetourism #wineaustralia
  • Remember when visiting our amazing cellar door to check-in!

#balnavesofcoonawarra #checkin #coonawarra #balnaves #cellardoor #seesa
  • We’ve been popping corks here at Balnaves’s getting into the Christmas spirit 🎄🍷#balnavesofcoonawarra #seesa #christmas #cellardoor #coonawarra
  • Happy Friday! Have a great day!

#balnavesofcoonawarra #friday #vibes #nearlytheweekend
  • Opal the Labrador and little Maisey, enjoyed frolicking by the pond whilst their owners enjoyed a picnic box and a glass of wine on the lawn. We can’t wait to meet you and your four legged friends soon! ... Maybe even a treat for the well behaved pooch! 🐶 🍷 🧀 #balnavesofcoonawarra #dogfriendly #cellardoor #coonawarra #seesa
  • We would love to see you today, we are open 11:30am - 4:30pm!

#balnavesofcoonawarra #winetasting #coonawarra #wine #cellardoor #weekendvibes #seeyouthere

Follow
Balnaves

  • Have you tried our 2015 The Blend? The ONLY wine in Coonawarra to feature in James Halliday's Top 100 wines! Why not come and try some today.. #balnavesofcoonawarra #theblend #coonawarra #jameshalliday #top100wines
  • Miss Tilly checking out the bunch counts in the lovely sun shine! 
#balnavesofcoonawarra #coonawarra #jackrussell #winery #bunchcounts
  • Beautiful views here at Balnaves! 
#balnavesofcoonawarra #coonawarra #summer #seesa
  • Be sure to pop in today for a wine tasting, and why not get a picnic box and glass of wine to enjoy on the deck or on the grass! See you from 11:30am

#balnavesofcoonawarra #openinghours #cellardoor #coonawarra #saturdayvibes #weekend #winetasting
  • Its time for wine, have a great Friday night from the Balnaves team! 
#balnavesofcoonawarra #timeforwine #fridaynightvibes #weekendishere #coonawarra #seesa #wine
  • We would love to see your photos from your visit here.. Please give us a hashtag in your next picture! 
#balnavesofcoonawarra #cellardoor #coonawarra #winesa
  • Tickets are on sale now! 
Wine, friends & comedy - a perfect combination to a guaranteed great day out in Coonawarra! 
#Repost @grapesofmirth
・・・
Coonawarra, we love you! You’re like no other wine region - one big happy (possibly dysfunctional) family. To prove it, at our January event, we have not one, but twelve wine producers pouring their amazing wines!
There would be no show without these wonderfully funny people @dilrukj @dave_thorno @calbowilson @thefionaoloughlin @nathvalvo @merrickwatts
.
Tickets on sale tomorrow at 9am - Link in Bio
.
Thank you to our wine peeps @coonawarra_wine @rymillwinery @raidisestate @majellawines @hollickestates @penleyestate @balnaves_of_coonawarra @brandslaira @digiorgiofamilywines @patrickofcoonawarra @blok_coonawarra @koonara @whistlepostwines
.
.
#grapesofmirth #comedy #standupcomedy #wine #coonawarra #coonawarrawine #limestonecoast #penola #drinkeatlaugh #winetourism #wineaustralia
  • Remember when visiting our amazing cellar door to check-in!

#balnavesofcoonawarra #checkin #coonawarra #balnaves #cellardoor #seesa
  • We’ve been popping corks here at Balnaves’s getting into the Christmas spirit 🎄🍷#balnavesofcoonawarra #seesa #christmas #cellardoor #coonawarra
  • Happy Friday! Have a great day!

#balnavesofcoonawarra #friday #vibes #nearlytheweekend
  • Opal the Labrador and little Maisey, enjoyed frolicking by the pond whilst their owners enjoyed a picnic box and a glass of wine on the lawn. We can’t wait to meet you and your four legged friends soon! ... Maybe even a treat for the well behaved pooch! 🐶 🍷 🧀 #balnavesofcoonawarra #dogfriendly #cellardoor #coonawarra #seesa
  • We would love to see you today, we are open 11:30am - 4:30pm!

#balnavesofcoonawarra #winetasting #coonawarra #wine #cellardoor #weekendvibes #seeyouthere

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