Merlot gets somewhat of a bad run here in Australia, predominantly due to a clone that was prodigiously planted here in the 1990’s called D3V14, or the Davis clone. There are several producers now trying desperately to give Merlot its time in the sun with other clonal selections. Indeed, some of the greatest Bordeaux wines are Merlot dominant. Which leads us to Blue Pyrenees Estate. With strong French influence at time of inception, Merlot has always been planted on the site, however, now well over the half the Merlot plantings are D3V14. But the original plantings on the other blocks are unknown clones including one block where, according to National Sales Manager Simon McShane, the “Merlot is distinctly different, may be Franc or just a very distinct clone.” This may very well assist in setting Blue Pyrenees apart from many other “dry red” Merlots.
Label artwork is by Melbourne artist John Sheehan, named “Gentle Valley Light.”
Blue Pyrenees Estate, Merlot, Pyrenees, 2017
Deep garnet hue. Offers aromas of wet mint leaf, fresh (but big) mulberries off the tree, powdered drinking chocolate and smoky plum. Medium bodied and friendly. Subtle, balanced rounded dark fruit flavours with a modicum of light tannins and a tight, medium short finish. Still pleasurable, easy drinking.
Rating: 16.75/20 (87/100)
Wine sample courtesy of Blue Pyrenees Estate