Smith & Hooper Merlot 2018

Great merlot is all about balance. It is not well suited to bold wine styles – it’s more your comfy old sofa that fits like a glove. Yes, the greatest wines in the world can live for decades but most merlots are best enjoyed young, like this Wrattonbully Merlot from Smith & Hooper.

Wrattonbully is a little warmer than Coonawarra and gives the local merlot more weight and generosity. This wine is right in the slot for serious drinkability with its bright, pretty and juicy fruits. Red and blackcurrant fruits are lifted by black olive and cedar fruit complexity. The palate is a little richer – blackberry laced fruits are well supported by spicy, vanillin oak with well integrated tannins and a lingering finish. Merlot fans will not be disappointed, especially if matched up to a rabbit stew.

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