Dandelion Vineyards Damsel of the Barossa Merlot 2020

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If the Skyhooks were winelovers, that old song just might be ‘Merlot is not a Dirty Word’. Oh how the mighty… The grapes for this were sourced from an old vine Barossa vineyard, harvested by way of whole bunches, gently crushed and naturally fermented in open fermenters for eight days. Hand plunged twice a day and then basket pressed into older French and American barriques. After a year and a half maturing, it was bottled without filtration or fining. 

Merlot was the hottest thing on the planet before that movie – you know the one. Now, it is the red-haired stepchild of grapes. Shame, as good ones can be delicious and this is a good one. Inky dark black with lifted aromatics, this has the fruitcake/plum pudding notes that can be found in the better examples. Rich, even a bit decadent. Also notes of chocolate and aniseed. Finely balanced with a good lingering finish and a soft texture, this is a prime example of what Merlot can be. It shows why this grape was so popular before that film.

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