There is not too much merlot or cabernet sauvignon in the Adelaide Hills as it is a very cool climate for these varieties with the likes of Ashton Hills giving up years ago. Despite the challenges team Henschke persevere and I am glad they do as Abbotts Prayer is regularly one of the country’s best merlots. 2018 has turned out quite a ripe expression of this vineyard with sweet leafy cassis and cedar aromas which are vibrant and generous. The palate is more savoury and earthy, even sinewy, with dark fruits and green olive flavours before a long and slightly angular finish. It is not quite ready to go and will be best enjoyed when those tannins have settled, ideally with roast turkey.