Lanzerac Merlot 2009

Reflects a deep red colour with hints of red berries and cocoa. On the nose Flavours of chocolate, dark berries, pencil shavings, slight cigar box and vanilla, plums and blackberry is prominent. On the palate the wine shows a good balance tannin structure, rich body, with fruit and lingering on the aftertaste.

Duck, venison, casseroles, mature cheeses

variety : Merlot [ 92% Merlot ]
winemaker : Wynand Lategan
wine of origin : Stellenbosch
analysis : alc : 14.46 % vol  rs : 4.9 g/l  pH : 3.41  ta : 5.9 g/l  
type : Red  style : Dry  body : Full   wooded
pack : Bottle  closure : Cork  

ageing : Mature a further 2-4 years

in the vineyard : Vineyard blocks: Three vineyard blocks, D6, D11 and D13.

Area: 8.17 ha
Crop size: 40.6 ton
Tons per ha: 4.9 t/ha
Altitude: 165m – 320m
Age of vines: 15 (D6), 11 (D11) and 6 years.
Rootstock: MGT 101/14 (D6, D13) and R110 (D11).
Clones: MO192B (D6), MO 36A (D11) and MO343 (D13).
Soil: Deep red rocky soil.
Plant direction: N/S.
Trellising: 5-wire Perold system. Sufficient to accommodate the vigour of the vines and to ensure good distribution of shoots, leaves and bunches.
Density: 3,500 vines per ha on average.
Space between rows: 2,4m (D6) and 3m (D11).
Space between vines: 1m (D6) and 1.5m (D11).

Irrigation: Micro spitters and drip irrigation controlled by computer system through moisture meters and tensiometers. This enables stress management of the vines to produce optimum fruit quality. This is done in accordance with the water retention ability of the specific vineyard blocks.
Canopy management: Optimal balance between vigour and crop load is achieved by pruning through the correct number of bearer eyes (2). Summer manipulation in the form of suckering, shoot thinning and positioning complement the winter pruning.

about the harvest: All harvesting is done by hand. Extreme care is taken not to damage grapes and only healthy grapes are picked. Grapes are picked when fully ripe.

in the cellar : The grapes were destemmed, and the berries hand-sorted before crushing. The mash was pumped to combination tanks where fermentation took place on the skins to extract flavour and colour. The juice was pumped over the skins three times per day for 20-30 minutes at a time to cool the cap as well as extract colour and flavours. After fermentation was finished, the wine was left on skins for a few days. The wine was then drained off the skins and the skins were put in a pneumatic press and pressed dry.
After malolactic fermentation took place in tanks the separate batches of Merlot was pump into French Oak barrels to begin the maturation process. The 2009 Merlot was matured for 12 months in a combination new wood (33%), second fill (33%) and third fill (33%) before it was blended and bottled.

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