This is very good Australian Merlot. I don’t get to say that nearly enough. Sure, our clones are junk (better clones = better Merlot, which is why Merite’s Merlot is so good), but also there isn’t enough love given to this noble variety.
Truth be told, this is as much Bendigo as it is Merlot, but satisfying too (and I like it more than the blend). A vast ocean of dark berry fruit here, but still medium bodied. Plum, chocolate coloured plum flesh, rich oak, it all threatens to be a bit big and drying but ends up plush and full. Some oak tannins to finish, but enough fruit tannins too. Plenty of fruit, classy tannins, a little alcohol warmth. Plenty of presence It’s just a nice wine.
Balgownie Estate Merlot 2019. Best drinking: now and for at least a decade. 18/20, 93/100. 14%, $45. Balgownie website. Would I buy it? Go you halves.
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