Balnaves The Blend 2013 Front Label
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Balnaves The Blend 2013

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750ML / 14% ABV
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750ML / 14% ABV

Winemaker Notes

Vintage 2013 was generally mild with one warm period. This produced outstanding Merlot from the Avery and Silage vineyards, Cabernet Sauvignon from Walker, Avery and Quarry and Petit Verdot from Dunstan vineyard. These were combined and matured in French oak for 14 months.

Dark red in colour, the nose is intense with aromas of mulberry, wild blackberry and liquorice combined with delicate smoky-coffee French oak. The palate is medium bodied with a soft round Merlot mouth- feel, black fruit flavours and a touch of dried herbs. This wine will reward careful cellaring, and decant before drinking.

Blend: 52% Merlot, 46% Cabernet Sauvignon, 2% Petit Verdot

Critical Acclaim

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WS 90
Wine Spectator
The fresh cherry and plum flavors show fragrant accents of mint and anise. This is polished and bright on the long finish, where all the elements sing in harmony. Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Petit Verdot. Drink now through 2026.
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Balnaves

Balnaves

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Balnaves, Australia
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We are a small family owned wine company in the heart of the famous Coonawarra Terra Rossa strip. The initial vineyard plantings were commenced in 1975 and have now increased to 47 hectares. Although predominantly Cabernet Sauvignon the vineyard also includes Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Chardonnay and Shiraz.
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Distinguished by a thin, subterranean band of crumbled, red clay loam, Coonawarra is a fairly flat, otherwise unobtrusive region with a cool Mediterranean climate, actually not dissimilar to Bordeaux.

In Coonawarra, this unique layer of red clay is called, "terra rossa" and gets its color from iron oxide. The terra rossa soil overlies soft, penetrable limestone, in a continuous area that is part of the Limestone Coast zone of South Australia. This uncommon layering of soils creates a substrate that is both well draining and at the same time, offers good water retention to support vine roots through dry summers.

Not surprisingly, Coonawara experiences great success with the Bordeaux varieties, namely Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot, but also Shiraz. However Cabernet reigns superior and accounts for half of the Coonawarra harvest each year. Coonawarra Cabernet Sauvignon develops powerful, yet polished tannins, ripe, red berry fruit and often sweet herb or dried mint qualities. The region has an increased focus on the individual expressions of single vineyards.

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One of the world’s most classic and popular styles of red wine, Bordeaux-inspired blends have spread from their homeland in France to nearly every corner of the New World, especially in California, Washington and Australia. Typically based on either Cabernet Sauvignon or Merlot and supported by Cabernet Franc, Malbec and Petit Verdot, these are sometimes referred to in the US as “Meritage” blends. In Bordeaux itself, Cabernet Sauvignon dominates in wines from the Left Bank of the Gironde River, while the Right Bank focuses on Merlot. Often, blends from outside the region are classified as being inspired by one or the other.

Tasting Notes for Bordeaux Blends

Bordeaux Blends are dry, red wines and generally have aromas and flavors of black currant, black cherry plum, graphite, cedar and violet. Cabernet-based, Left-Bank-styled wines are typically more tannic and structured, while Merlot-based wines, modeled after the Right Bank, are softer and suppler. Cabernet Franc can add herbal notes, while Malbec and Petit Verdot contribute color and structure.

Perfect Food Pairings for Bordeaux Blends

Since Bordeaux red blends are often quite structured and tannic, they pair best with hearty, flavorful and fatty meat dishes. Any type of steak makes for a classic pairing. Equally welcome with these wines would be beef brisket, pot roast, braised lamb or smoked duck.

Sommelier Secrets for Bordeaux Blends

While the region of Bordeaux is limited to a select few approved grape varieties in specified percentages, the New World is free to experiment. Bordeaux blends in California may include equal amounts of Cabernet Franc and Malbec, for example. Occassionally a winemaker might add a small percentage of a non-Bordeaux variety, such as Syrah or Petite Sirah for a desired result.

GPSH2BABL13_2013 Item# 151282

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