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Meerlust ‘Rubicon’ 2009

Producer Information

Meerlust Estate has been the pride of the Myburgh family since 1756. Today, the dedication to quality winemaking continues under the guidance of 8th generation, Hannes Myburgh. Cellar Master, Chris Williams, who has worked on the estate since 1995 has been in charge of winemaking since 2004. The name Meerlust means “pleasure of the sea”, as the property is situated 5km from False Bay (and 15km south of Stellenbosch), with the cooling influence of the coast, allowing the grapes ripen slowly.

Vineyards

The Cabernet Sauvignon is grown on low yielding, predominantly partially decomposed granite gravel topsoil rich in quartz and feldspar to a depth of approximately 600mm with a loamy clay subsoil. The Merlot vineyards are planted on clay rich, yet well drained soils to ensure moisture retention and availability to the vines roots throughout summer. There are considerable deposits of iron-rich laterite in the Merlot vineyards, which accentuates the fruit definition and mineral profile of the wine. The Cabernet Franc vineyard is situated on well drained, stony Vilafontes soil with approximately 20% clay which is ideal for this variety.

Winemaking

Each parcel was fermented separately to monitor vineyard expression. The Cabernets were given lengthy macerations to ensure complete extraction of the perfectly ripe fruit, but the Merlot was given even longer post fermentation maceration to encourage complete polymerization of complex tannins and add a broad, juicy and silky texture to the blend. Malolactic fermentation takes place in barrel for eight months before assessment and assemblage. The wine is aged for 21 months in 70% new French Nevers oak, 30% second fill Nevers and Alliers barrels.

Vintage Information

Green harvest takes place during veraison to reduce yields, increase concentration and fruit definition. The 2009 vintage was ideal for Cabernet based blends, the previous winter being cold and wet leading to deep vine dormancy. The ripening period was characterized by a long, mild summer ensuring good fruit and tannin ripeness. Cooler weather in autumn meant longer hang time and slower ripening. The crop was healthy due to the ever-present prevailing south-easterly sea breezes. The fruit from each vineyard was harvested in small lots.

Tasting Note

Deep in colour with a purple hue. Aromas of red plums, some floral notes, cedar and sweet spice. On the palate the wine is full-bodied, structured with rounded, linear tannins and wonderful notes of fresh blackcurrant and dark berry fruit, spice and leather.

Food Pairing

Ideal with red meat dishes; steak, casseroles, venison, game or mature cheese.

Serving Suggestion

Serve at 18-20°C. Aging potential: Up to 2029, provided wine is stored in ideal cellar conditions.

Press

94 Points, Tim Atkin SA Report 2014
“Chris Williams is justifiably proud of this blend… which lives up to the wine’s Cape iconic status. It’s a mix of tradition and modernism with some mint and dried herbs, cassis fruit, serious tannins and supporting acidity. A wine for grown ups, it will age very well, too.”

Stellenbosch, South Africa
70% Cabernet Sauvignon
20% Merlot
9% Cabernet Franc
1% Petit Verdot

14.5%
2.4 g/l
6.0 g/l
3.6

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