Thursday, 21 July 2016

Gartelmann Wines Joey Merlot 2014

Gartelmann is a little operation on Lovedale Road in the Hunter Valley. They have a cute cellar door and a cafe, overlooking a small lake, which is always busy. It was certainly the case again when I dropped in briefly a month ago for a milkshake. No fruit is grown on site and the wines are made off site by Liz Jackson out of First Creek.

Sourced from Orange, it's the first time Gartelmann have made a wine from this vineyard. It spent 14 months in oak (25% new French), the remainder saw one to three year old American and French oak.

This is smart Merlot. Yes, I said it! It's actually refreshing to see someone 'trying' with the variety. This is certainly not one of those boring types that's for sure. Some re-branding has taken place too and the Magpie synonymous with the label takes its place now albeit microscopically sadly.

There's an attractive energy about this wine. Black fruits, some cassis, cloves and faint vanilla oak sweetness. Opulent width and length delivered, black currant and mulberry fruit take the lead in the mouth driving to a mouth watering finish - literally. Good acid frames the fruit ensuring there's plenty of life left here up to eight years. This will be drinking even better in a year or two.

Great buying for 25 bucks too. More Merlots like this please.

93/100 - Very good

Region: Orange
RRP: $25
Source: Sample

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