“Pegasus Bay Merlot Cabernet ages like clockwork”
This was a very balanced and even growing season without extremes. Mild spring weather resulted in early bud burst. There was good accumulation of summer heat and a long, dry autumn. As we did not harvest the fruit until May it had plenty of time to become physiologically ripe with a good balance of sugars, acid and tannins.
After picking, the fruit was put into stainless steel tanks and fermented using the techniques which have made Bordeaux red wines or Claret so famous. During fermentation, the raised vats were regularly drained by allowing the evolving wine to splash under the influence of gravity, into an open container to naturally aerate it. It was then sprayed back over the floating cap of grape skins to help keep them moist and healthy. When the fermentation stopped, the tanks were sealed and the mixture was allowed a period of post-fermentation maceration, the exact duration of which was determined by daily tasting. The wine was then separated from the grape remnants, and put into oak barriques.
When the winery warmed in the summer after harvest the wine underwent spontaneous secondary (malolactic) fermentation by the action of its own indigenous micro-organisms. It remained in the oak barriques for a total of 2 years. Over this time it received several rackings to help it clarify. The final assemblage was then made by carefully blending the multiple batches in exact proportion, according to taste. Numerous blind taste tests were carried out by our winemakers.
The wine has a deep, ruby colour. The merlot has provided purple plum flavours and a plump, fleshy, mid-palate structure. Cassis elements and a backbone of mouth-filling, ripe tannins come from the cabernet sauvignon. Small portions of cabernet franc and malbec donate an ethereal, lifted bouquet, the latter giving a whiff of rose petals, as well as filling out the structure and adding to its length. It is a big, dense, chewy wine, which expands in the mouth and has a lingering, spicy after-taste. While ready to drink on release it should become increasingly mellow and plump with careful cellaring and show a range of additional bottle-age complexities.
“Pegasus Bay Merlot Cabernet ages like clockwork”
“It's gorgeously ripe and lifted on the nose … wonderfully flavoursome palate delivering excellent weight and plump mouthfeel. Well structured by beautifully infused tannins, it's bold yet stylish with a persistent robust finish.”
“A delicious dark and complex blend … from North Canterbury, where long, dry autumns can offer ripe, rich, dark flavours. Add great winemaking into the mix and here is an exceptional value red that drinks beautifully now and can age further.”
“I really like the flower and red fruits here that flow across the palate. Medium-bodied with fine tannins and a reserved finish. Very classy ...”
“… Savoury chocolate notes add depth to the black-fruited palate.”
“This superb full-bodied blend hails from the Waipara Valley in the heart of North Canterbury … Dark blackberry fruit flavours marry nicely with the smooth soft appeal of Merlot.”
“… A saucy blend of merlot, cabernet sauvignon, malbec and cabernet franc … velvety-smooth textures and layers of plum, mocha, hints of leather and tobacco leaf on the palate … Yum!.”
“… very good complexity, gentle tannins, and a supple, finely textured finish.”
“Big, brooding, earthy, Bordelais style … full-bodied, nicely weighted with rich, chewy tannins and positive length ….”
“ … Seductively smooth-textured wine … Delicious, complex red with good cellaring potential. Clearly from a top vintage …”
“Richly fruited and enticing … flavoursome in the mouth with excellent weight and persistency. Plump and fleshy with a prolonged delicious finish.”
“The wine possesses power and good energy generated by richness and concentration. This is readily delicious, with elegant and poise on a well-structured palate….”
“Remarkable red that probably owes much of its rich, ripe flavours to relatively old vines and the experienced hand of winemaker, Mat Donaldson …”
“… Well made, youthful, fleshy and long. A lovely example ready to enjoy …”
“… mouthfiling with concentration, vibrant blackcurrant, plum, herb and spice flavours, showing good complexity, finely balanced tannins and obvious cellaring potential.”
"Delightfully fruited and fragrant … succulent and smooth … finishing long and flavoursome"
“...Concentrated … This is a refined Merlot and Cabernet based blend … on a vibrant palate with fine structure”
“ … Dry, firm textures, youthful, ripe and loaded with flavour …Plenty of length and finish … “
“ … Powerful, juicy, dark fruits dance on the palate …Sumptuous fine-grained tannins and beautiful balance… Amazingly long and delicious finish …”
“ … This has richness and fullness on the palate with plump plums holding very deep, fleshy and long”
“An impressive wine for the ball of succulent ripe plum-flavored fruit it dishes up amid succulently ripe tannins and fresh, earthy, background complexity. This has all-round appeal, casual or formal!”
“ … strong, vibrant blackcurrant, plum and spice flavours, finely integrated oak, ripe, supple tannins, and excellent depth, complexity and harmony.”
“ …. immensely appealing …. Excellent length"
“ … Lovely bouquet of fruit, mineral, concentration and charm … complex and intriguing … Great example from Canterbury”
"…The nose is seamlessly melded and reveals fragrant spices, musk and a suggestion of camphor. Medium-full bodied, the palate is softly concentrated with integrated flavours ... good depth and the palate flows smoothly with satin-like tannins, and underlying acid vitality. ... long, complex….”
“Full-coloured, with fresh plum, spice and nutty oak flavours, showing excellent complexity and depth."
impressive complexity…” Good intensity of flavours…The oak is perfectly integrated and there’s a lovely round, supple texture in the mouth, giving superb structure and balance
100 best wines "Chewy, fleshy red with plum, dark berry chocolate/mocha and nutty oak flavours. Deliciously accessible red.”
"Top Tip" “From an excellent vintage this is a bold and intense wine with aromas and flavours of dark plums, blackberries, cassis and blueberries. It has mealy style that makes it dense and long lasting.”
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