Villa Maria Reserve Gimblett Gravels Cabernet Sauvignon-Merlot 2009
Bordeaux Red Blends from Hawkes Bay, New Zealand
The 2009 Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon Merlot has a dark purple hue. The nose shows lovely aromatic purity with tight knit layers of red plum and cassis, mingling with roasted coffee bean, dried thyme and complex cedary spice nuances. The palate is soft yet concentrated, beautifully focused with fine-grained tannins and integrated oak. While approachable in its youth, this wine has an understated finesse and beauty that will benefit from careful cellaring for many years to come.
The Wine Advocate - "A blend of 75% Cabernet Sauvignon and 25% Merlot from the Gimblett Gravels sub-region, the 2009 Reserve Hawke's Bay Cabernet Sauvignon / Merlot was matured 20 months in French oak barriques, 40% new. It displays a deep purple-black color and notes of warm plums, creme de cassis and black cherry compote over pencil shavings, cinnamon stick, cloves, dark chocolate and cedar. The medium bodied palate has plenty of ripe, expressive fruit, lively acid, silky tannins, and a long, pure finish. Delicious now, it should keep through 2018+."
Wine Enthusiast - "Over the past several vintages, Villa's tannin management in its Reserve Cab-Merlot has evolved to make the wines more approachable young. This blend of 75% Cabernet and 25% Merlot is fleshy and supple without being soft, with leafy cassis fruit framed by hints of vanilla and charred oak."
Villa Maria Winery
The Villa Maria story is one of absolute passion. Each wine is crafted in the unique, fruit-driven style of New Zealand, showcasing the very best of the country’s distinct wine regions. Villa Maria sources grapes from New Zealand’s premium grape growing regions, including Marlborough and Hawkes Bay, and produces wines in state-of-the-art winemaking facilities in Auckland and Marlborough. The winery Sir George Fistonich started in 1961 is still family owned and stands as an icon of superior quality and innovation in New Zealand winemaking. Villa Maria was also the first wine company in New Zealand to declare the winery a “cork-free zone,” sealing all wines from the 2001 vintage onwards with a screw cap to ensure quality in every bottle. Dedicated to minimizing environmental impact, Villa Maria has pioneered sustainable viticulture and winemaking since the 1990s, and is one of the very few wineries that have acquired four certifications as proof of the on-going commitment. In 2015, Drinks International named Villa Maria the most admired wine brand in New Zealand and fourth most admired wine brand in the word. View all Villa Maria Wines
About Hawkes BayView a map of Hawkes Bay wineries
Hawkes Bay is the second largest wine region, following Marlborough. The area is known for its shmorgasborg of different microclimates and soils. Gimblett Gravels, while sounding like a character out of Lord of the Rings, is a soil and a district in the area. Gimblett Gravels are a gravelly mix that absorb and retain heat, much like the soils of Graves in Bordeaux or Chateauneuf du Pape in the Rhone.
Notable FactsChardonnay is the most planted grape variety here, and makes some excellent, usually un-oaked, wines. Sauvignon Blanc from the region are some is the best from the North Island. In addition, many winemakers are throwing their hat in the Bordeaux Blend ring, taking advantage of long sunshine hours and Gimblett Gravel soils by growing Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. Syrah is also planted around the area and the reds are frequently blends. A few winemakers are making Pinot Noir from the cooler parts of Hawkes Bay.
About New ZealandThe country of New Zealand is about 1000 miles from the coast of Australia. It consists of two long islands, end to end, that are approximately the same length as California. Most of the country's climate is maritime due to the abundant coastline. The northern island is warmer and wetter, while the southern island is cooler and dryer. The most popular grapes of New Zealand are Sauvignon Blanc (made most famous by the bright, crisp wines coming out of Marlborough), Chardonnay and the ever-growing Pinot Noir.
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