Monday, 5 May 2014

TN : John X Merriman 2011, Rustenberg Estate, Simonsberg, Stellenbosch, South Africa

This wine is a blend of 55% Cabernet Sauvignon, 37% Merlot, 4% Petit Verdot, 2% Cabernet Franc, and 2% Malbec. The pH is 3.6, the residual sugar is 2.9 grammes per litre, and the total acidity is 5.6 grammes per litre. The winemaker was R. Christians. Seventeen different vineyard batches were vinified separately, and approximately nine aerative pump-overs were employed. Two or three rack and returns occurred during primary fermentation at approximately 26°C, in order to ensure maximum extraction, followed by two to three weeks extended maceration on skins. The wine was then drained and gravity-filled to barrels for Malolactic Fermentation (MLF). The separate batches were blended after eleven months and then returned to barrel for a further nine months’ maturation. Zymaflore (FX10) was the main yeast used for alcoholic fermentation. 41% new and 59% second and third fill 225 litre French oak barrels were used to mature the wine in.
The vineyards were located at an altitude of between 300 and 420 metres. The vineyard soil type was Decomposed granite (Tukulu / Hutton) and Oakleaf. The vine rootstock was 101-14 Mgt. The age of the vines was between 13 and 23 years old. All the vines were VSP trained and two bud spur-pruned. Drip irrigation was used. The vineyard yield was seven to eight tons per hectare.

This wine is named in honour of a former owner of Rustenberg, John Xavier Merriman, who bought the farm in 1892 in sympathy with farmers suffering from the phyloxera crisis. He played a great role in revitalizing Rustenberg and in promoting the tourism and agricultural value of Ida’s Valley, the area close to the town of Stellenbosch in which Rustenberg is situated.

This wine was imported by Scanwine of Sweden AB.

Colour : Dark blackberry

Aroma : Blackcurrant, blackberry, plums, herbs, milk chocolate, coffee

Taste : Blackcurrant, tobacco, herbs, blackberry, structured drying tannins on finish

Alcohol : 14%

Price : 201 SEK

Mark : B-

Website : Rustenberg Estate

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