Quite possibly the most under appreciated and misunderstood variety in Australia. This variety truly reaches an ethereal state of textural weight and power when hailing from the Adelaide Hills. We search for fruit that will lend a powerful tannin structure, balanced by a bold core of fruit with an untamed, wild herbaceous feel. Deep. Moody. Broody. Dark Plum. Anise. Limited Production.About the 2014:An incredible vintage for the winemaker, not so much for the grower. Yields were dramatically effected through a cold flowering season, and a lack of native pollinators on account of a poor cherry season (funny how these things are linked?). What results? Lots of bunches, but tiny berries. A general 60% drop in yield, more in other vineyards. Nevertheless, we continue our foray into one of the most under appreciated grape varieties, with this iteration. Given the typical Unico Zelo flair - wild-fermented and left on skins for 25 days post-fermentation. This wine...is a just a baby. 12 months in oak did nothing to settle the Nebbiolo-like tannins that course through this vinous example of Adelaide Hills Merlot. To make matters more dire, we only have 20 dozen in total (18 after we stashed some in the cellar). This is by far, our most limited wine we've made - and one for the cellar. About the 2013:Only in bottle for two and a half weeks at tasting. From Norton Summit in Adelaide Hills ‰ÛÒ Morialta vineyard. Spends 30 days on skins, destemmed/crushed, wild ferment, goes to old wood. ‰Û÷This is the vineyard of the Yattarna man, the merlot spent some time in the top Pennie‰۪s stuff, Grosset takes the pinot noir. A one off though‰Û_ some other big named people have been knocking at the door for fruit, the prices have skyrocketed‰۪, explains winemaker Brendan Carter, ‰Û÷we‰۪re really trying to bring merlot back with a few people; a great underdog variety‰۪.
Deep, moody, broody perfume of dark plum, anise, soy sauce. Rich and potent. Has some crispness and firm tannin work in the mouth ‰ÛÒ more dark fruit, touch of brine to the acidity, some undergrowth and herbal character too. Sloshes about the palate with ripe fruit and crushed rock tannin. Untamed kind of feel. Some sweetness there too. Curious. 90+ Points. (Mike Bennie - The Wine Front).