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Merlot

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Bogle Merlot 2016 (1x75cl)

Though the Bogle family has been farming in the Clarksburg region for six generations, their involvement in the wine business spans back 50 years. In addition to passing down a strong work ethic and dedication to quality, the success of Bogle over the years is rooted in the day-to-day involvement of the Bogle family. The family takes great pride in making wines of exceptional character and quality. From vineyard to bottle, the highest standards are set, in order to create a wine that overdelivers each and every time.

To see an excellent tasting/information sheet from Bogle themselves, please click on the blue link below.

Bogle Merlot 2016 - fiche technique

Concentrated and full-bodied, the Merlot is a study in contrasts. Subtle and silky, yet bright and intense, this deep red wine is multifaceted. Black raspberry and dark cherry greet the nose, while the brighter fruit of ripe summer plum dazzles the palate. The toast and spice of twelve months in American oak seamlessly integrate with the tannin structure of this wine, leaving a long, lingering finish.

£14.60

Charles Smith Velvet Devil Merlot 2016 (1x75cl)

See blue link below for the excellent fiche technique/technical note from the winemakers at Charles Smith.

Charles Smith Velvet Devil Merlot 2016 - fiche technique

The maker says: "When Hollywood’s surprise hit Sideways suddenly spawned anti-Merlot sentiments everywhere, Charles set out to rebuff the movie’s unflattering depiction of this great varietal. One sip of this bold, sultry creation and you’ll know he succeeded at making Merlot sexy again".

More traditionally put: This wine is made by Charles Smith, a self–taught winemaker who brings his rock and roll spirit to the vineyards of Walla Walla, Washington. As a romantic young man, Charles Smith moved across the world to Denmark to follow his love for his girlfriend at the time. In Scandinavia, he became a recognized manager for rock bands such as The Raveonettes. While travelling on the road with these bands, he developed his passion for wine. In 1999, he moved back to Washington, opened a wine store and became friendly with a French winemaker, later convincing him to move to Walla Walla to make wine together.

The aromas are that of cherry, cedar and black cherry, with an intense cherry, blackberry and some tobacco on the finish which is clean and lingers for a full mouth feel.

89% Merlot, 10% Cabernet Sauvignon, 1% Malbec.

Letting this wine sit in the glass for 10 to 15 minutes will help to enhance the flavors and bring out the aromas while burning off any surface alcohol. The best foods to pair with this wine are lamb chops, steaks, pork chops, beef stew and hearty soups. This wine can also be enjoyed by itself due to its rich velvety texture on the palate.

ABV = 13.5%.

£15.00

Charles Smith Velvet Devil Merlot 2017 (1x75cl)

See blue link below for the excellent fiche technique/technical note from the winemakers at Charles Smith.

Charles Smith Velvet Devil Merlot 2017 - fiche technique

The maker says: "When Hollywood’s surprise hit Sideways suddenly spawned anti-Merlot sentiments everywhere, Charles set out to rebuff the movie’s unflattering depiction of this great varietal. One sip of this bold, sultry creation and you’ll know he succeeded at making Merlot sexy again".

More traditionally put: This wine is made by Charles Smith, a self–taught winemaker who brings his rock and roll spirit to the vineyards of Walla Walla, Washington. As a romantic young man, Charles Smith moved across the world to Denmark to follow his love for his girlfriend at the time. In Scandinavia, he became a recognized manager for rock bands such as The Raveonettes. While travelling on the road with these bands, he developed his passion for wine. In 1999, he moved back to Washington, opened a wine store and became friendly with a French winemaker, later convincing him to move to Walla Walla to make wine together.

The aromas are that of cherry, cedar and black cherry, with an intense cherry, blackberry and some tobacco on the finish which is clean and lingers for a full mouth feel.

89% Merlot, 10% Cabernet Sauvignon, 1% Malbec.

Letting this wine sit in the glass for 10 to 15 minutes will help to enhance the flavors and bring out the aromas while burning off any surface alcohol. The best foods to pair with this wine are lamb chops, steaks, pork chops, beef stew and hearty soups. This wine can also be enjoyed by itself due to its rich velvety texture on the palate.

ABV = 13.5%.

£15.00

Planeta Sito dell Ulmo Merlot 2014 (1x 75cl)

As sampled at Exel Wines' November 2018 tasting. See here for the report of that evening.

In Planeta’s early years, expertise came from a surprising source: Australia. The winemaker brought in by Diego Planeta was an Italian – Carlo Corino – but one who had soaked in the latest warm-climate winemaking secrets during a stint in New South Wales. Ever since, Planeta has managed to captured the intrinsic perfume and fresh flavours of Sicily’s grapes in their wines.  The island estate pursued an unconventional approach to winemaking, with Planeta establishing a cult following for its barrel-aged Chardonnay, at a time when most other Italian whites were typically consumed straight out of the fermenter. This early success gave Planeta the credibility it needed to open the world’s eyes to the charms of Sicily’s indigenous grape varieties, ushering in a broad range of wines that today owes as much to Grecanico and Nero d’Avola as it does to the winery’s signature Chardonnay.

See blue link below for the excellent fiche technique/technical note from the winemakers themselves.

Planeta Sito dell Ulmo Merlot 2014 - fiche technique

100% Merlot.

A bewitching wine which gently overcomes you. Its uniqueness emerges in a particular way with a diverse but lively structure of tannins and with its strong and intensely savoury taste. This version of a densely ruby coloured Merlot, so rich with the sweet juice of black currant and candied violet which alternates with thyme and lavender, cannot pass unnoticed either by the palate of a refined taste or by that of an enthusiastic novice. It is a multi-faceted and intriguing red wine which combines the pleasure of tannin with an extraordinary persistence of taste.

ABV = 14.5%.

£21.25

Saint Etalon Merlot Vin de Pays d'Oc 2016 (1x75cl)

Saint Etalon is made by Foncalieu, one of the most forward-looking, energetic and quality-focused cooperatives in France. Over 1,600 growers are members with over 7,500ha of vines spread right across the south of France.

Low temperature pre-fermentation takes place, which is then followed by a 3 week long alcoholic fermentation at controlled temperatures of 25-26°C. There is gentle extraction and pumping-over is also used. The wine is matured on its lees for another 3 weeks and completes its second fermentation in tanks.

100% Merlot.

This easy-drinking red wine has an elegant nose of ripe berry fruit. Well-balanced, round and smooth on the palate.

This wine is suitable for vegetarians and vegans.

ABV = 13.0%.

£8.05

Steenberg Merlot 2016 (1x75cl)

Steenberg was the Cape’s first farm, which was established in 1682 and has certainly come a long way from its humble beginnings. In addition to the vineyard there is now a restaurant, hotel and golf course for visitors to enjoy. The vineyard team at Steenberg always strive to give their best to the wines by cultivating the vineyards to produce the healthiest grapes of the best quality. Their philosophy is that the "wines are grown in the vineyard and then cared for in the winery". Special attention was therefore placed in obtaining the very best and latest known clones and matched to the correct soils and slopes. Environmentally considerate farming practices are employed as far as possible, with the help of non-toxic, natural formulas of pest control, and the employment of natural predators for help in keeping the grapes as healthy as possible.

This wine is 100% Merlot.

To see an excellent information sheet and tasting note for this wine, please click on the blue link below.

Steenberg Merlot 2016 - fiche technique

ABV = 14.0%.

£16.05

The Cannonball Wine Company Merlot 2016 (1x 75cl)

It all began for Cannonball in 2006 with one varietal, Cabernet, and the vision to produce one of the best value wines available. By combining the winemaking expertise of co-founder Dennis Hills with the keen sourcing knowledge and business acumen of the other co-founder, Yoav Gila, Cannonball Wines was born. Dedicated to innovation, with a commitment to authenticity, their mission is to spread their passion by offering wines they believe in. They love what they do, and their dedication and passion shows in every bottle!

To read an excellent and informative description of this wine from Cannonball themselves, please click on the blue link below.

Cannonball Merlot 2016 - fiche technique

£14.90

The Paddock Merlot 2018 (1x75cl)

The Paddock wines are named after the paddock fences which are a regular feature dotted across the rolling landscape of southern Australia. These classic Australian single varietals deliver easily accessible and fruity wines, popular with many Australian wine drinkers, as well as those further afield.

100% Merlot.

This easy-going Merlot has a deep red, ruby colour alongside a subtle violet bouquet with vanilla oak giving it complexity. The palate is rich, rounded and has firm tannins on the finish.

ABV = 14.0%.

£7.05

Thelema Merlot 2017 (1x75cl)

Cabernet may be its trump card, but the origins of Thelema owe more to the wines of Burgundy than Bordeaux: it was a bottle of Puligny-Montrachet that lured Gyles Webb away from accountancy in Durban to winemaking in Stellenbosch. Armed with a winemaking degree and influenced by travels in Tuscany, Bordeaux and California, Gyles and his wife Barbara – a noted triathlete – bought Thelema, an old fruit farm high on the slopes of the Simonsberg mountain, in 1983.

This is the wilder side of Stellenbosch, where spotted leopards roam the vines and a combination of elevation and eucalyptus trees creates a much-prized style of Cabernet with a distinctively minty freshness. These days Gyles is Cellar Master, with the talented Schultz brothers (Rudi and Werner) responsible for the winemaking and vineyards respectively. But the philosophy remains true to Gyles’ original vision, centred on the principle of what he calls ‘benign neglect’ – minimal fining and filtration, and no use of commercial yeasts in the red wines. True too to the Thelema name, taken from the idealised concept of a new world order imagined by 16th century French monk, physician and writer Rabelais.

100% Merlot.

For the full data sheet and technical/tasting information from the winemakers themselves, click the blue link below.

Thelema Merlot 2017 - fiche technique

The wine shows bright, red fruit and hints of spice on the nose, with concentrated flavours on the palate and soft, polished tannins. Hints of dark chocolate complete this wonderfully balanced wine.

ABV = 14.5%.

£16.25

Torreon De Paredes Merlot 2016 (1x75cl)

Since its founding, Torreón de Paredes has based its agricultural practices on a deep respect for nature and the environment. Along with the natural characteristics that make Chile a “Viticulture Paradise”, the team at Torreón de Paredes has always paid close attention to maintaining vineyard practices that are considered by experts to be among the most ecologically sound on the planet. The winery’s constant goal is not only to produce excellent wines, but to also create ecological wines made with great respect for nature and the ecosystem.

To see tasting notes for this wine from the winery, please click on the blue link below.

Torreon de Paredes Merlot Rengo 2016 - fiche technique

£8.65

Torreon De Paredes Merlot Reserva 2015 (1x75cl)

Since its founding, Torreón de Paredes has based its agricultural practices on a deep respect for nature and the environment. Along with the natural characteristics that make Chile a “Viticulture Paradise”, the team at Torreón de Paredes has always paid close attention to maintaining vineyard practices that are considered by experts to be among the most ecologically sound on the planet. The winery’s constant goal is not only to produce excellent wines, but to also create ecological wines made with great respect for nature and the ecosystem.

To see tasting notes for this wine from the winery, please click on the blue link below.

Torreon de Paredes Merlot Reserva 2014 - fiche technique

£11.05

Torreon De Paredes Merlot Reserva Privada (unfiltered) 2015 (1x75cl)

Since its founding, Torreón de Paredes has based its agricultural practices on a deep respect for nature and the environment. Along with the natural characteristics that make Chile a “Viticulture Paradise”, the team at Torreón de Paredes has always paid close attention to maintaining vineyard practices that are considered by experts to be among the most ecologically sound on the planet. The winery’s constant goal is not only to produce excellent wines, but to also create ecological wines made with great respect for nature and the ecosystem.

To see tasting notes for this wine from the winery, please click on the blue link below.

Torreon de Paredes Merlot Reserva Privada 2011 - fiche technique

£14.90

Valdivieso Valley Selection (Single Valley Lot) Merlot, Gran Reserva 2012 (1x75cl)

Naming note: this wine has been available under two different names, hence the bracketed title(!), despite being the same wine. It was previously badged as the Single Valley Lot, but has now joined the fleet of Valley Selection wines from Valdivieso. Technically, the new label is entitled to draw grapes from a slightly wider area of the Rapel Valley, although we believe it will make almost no noticeable change to the wine.

Well-travelled Kiwi winemaker, Brett Jackson, has settled in Chile and much of Valdivieso’s success in recent years can be credited to his talent.

The vineyards for this wine are situated in the Rapel Valley sub-region of Chile's Central Valley where the hot, dry summers allow the grapes to ripen steadily before being harvested. These conditions deliver grapes with soft and silky tannins, distinctive aromas of currants and nuts.

Bright dark red with slight violet reflections. Aroma of fresh red fruits, cherry, plum and spicy notes. Soft and elegant, with silky tannins that deliver good volume and structure. Sweet and rich plum fruit with just a small hint of spice. It is full bodied with hints of cocoa and vanilla.

100% Merlot.

This is a rich and sumptuous Merlot at an incredible price.

ABV = 13.5%.

£11.95

Vignoble Du Sud Foncalieu Merlot Vin de Pays dOc 2017 (1x 75cl)

This wine is made using grapes grown in the vineyards of Puicheric, located 15 kms North East of Carcassone in the Languedoc region of Southern France.

100% Merlot.

Merlot makes a sublime, easily approachable wine to enjoy with friends. This is a well structured, fruit-driven, juicy medium red which is easy drinking with nice ripe soft fruit flavours.

ABV = 13.0%.

£7.65

Vina Leyda Merlot Reserva 2018 (1x 75cl)

Few wineries encapsulate the development of coolclimate winemaking in Chile as well as pioneering Viña Leyda. The first producer to explore this coastal area, a rising star of New World winemaking, it took its name from the local railway station and later lent it to the entire DO of Leyda Valley. If Casablanca Valley represents Chile’s first tentative steps into cool-climate production, Leyda is a series of determined, confident strides: just 14km from the Pacific, the Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Syrah planted here express a crispness, minerality and fine-boned structure not found elsewhere in Chile’s viticultural paradise. Viña Leyda now has more than 200 hectares under vine, but the approach remains one of micromanagement, with detailed mapping of each vineyard and individual lot, and constant experimentation with clonal selection and viticultural techniques.

The fruits of those labours are reflected not just in their impeccable Reserva range, but in the exciting series of single vineyard and single plot wines, including Sauvignon Blanc, Riesling, Chardonnay and a trio of top-quality Pinot Noirs.

This wine is 100% Merlot.

Honest and fresh in style, this is a juicy and red fruit Merlot. It has sweet aromas of plums, cherries, and spices. Dark chocolate and tobacco notes add complexity in the nose. Well structured in the mouth, wide and dense, with ripe tannins, bright acidity and a pleasant finish.

£10.60
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