Latest Merlot from Backsberg Estate Cellars Underscores Classic 2015 Vintage
Backsberg Estate Cellars in Paarl has just launched its popular Merlot wine, this from the 2015 vintage which is currently being described as one of the greatest vintages in the modern history of the Cape winelands.
According to Backsberg Estate Cellars CEO Simon Back, Merlot remains South Africa’s most consumed single red cultivar, and the Backsberg Merlot 2015 displays the characteristics of a classic, accessible red wine. “The quality of the 2015 vintage was evident on the day the first Merlot grapes arrived at the cellar,” he says. “The berries were uniform in size, a sign of even ripening. The chemical analyses showed a fine balance between sugar and acidity, with balanced pH levels. All-in-all the bunches were bursting with freshness. We knew from the outset this was going to turn out to be a fine example of Merlot, which is one of the most popular wines in the Backsberg range.”
Grapes are harvested from vines growing on the Simonsberg slopes, arguably South Africa’s finest red wine region. Soils are characterised by granite soils with clay and loam components. The vines vary from 5 to 15 years in age, yielding between 7 and 12 tons of grapes.
“With fine fruit such as this, we were not in a hurry to finish the fermentation,” says Back. “As a result the colour is ink-dark and vivid, with luxurious tannins drawn from the grape skins.”
The wine was matured in 3rd fill French oak for between 12 and 18 months.
“This 2015 version expresses pure ‘Merlot’, and to me it shows why this is such a keenly consumed variety around the world,” he says. “Firm and savoury flavours present a presence of power and depth, while the silky mouthfeel and crunchy red-berry taste makes one understand why Merlot is such a popular wine among new and experienced wine drinkers.”
Drinking deliciously now, the wine will grow in complexity as it matures over the next 7 to 15 years.
“An ability to mature is definitely a feature of Backsberg’s red and white wines,” says Back. “During our centenary year we opened many old vintages going back 40 years and more. They have stood the time, showing that our climate and soils are conducive to making wine for the long haul.”
Alc 14.3% R/S 2.6 g/l TA 5.5 pH 3.44
Cellar door price: R77.00
Also available on our online store, simply click here.