Lovely Merlots for the Festive Season

161015 - Winetasting 277

All-purpose, versatile, or flexible, call them what you will, but they are probably the most useful style of wines to have on hand, especially during the festive season. These are wines that can be drunk on their own, either before a meal, or if a friend drops in for a chat. But they are also food-friendly, able to partner up with a wide variety of dishes. If you expect to have plenty of people calling around, these are the kind of wines that should be on your shopping list. They also make for very good last-minute presents. Check out some of our recommendations



Tabali Pedregoso Gran Reserva Merlot 2015

Region: Chile, Limari Valley

Retail Price: S$ 40.00

About the Wine: Nice red color wine with a great concentration on the nose. Ripe, full of red fruits such as raspberry and strawberry, and with a hint of vanilla. On the palate, it is full bodied with nice tannins and great structure. The wine is well balanced with a nice acidity and lots of fruit. Long and pleasant finish.

About the Winery: Tabalí was one of the first wineries to settle in the Limarí Valley. It´s one of the most promising valleys of the country and it´s located in the North of Chile. The proximity to the Atacama Desert and to the Pacific Ocean, as well as the presence of limestone soils, brings an exceptional and unique terroir, ideal for the production of high quality wines.

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Cousino Macul Antiguas Reserva Merlot 2014

Region: Chile, Maipo Valley

Retail Price: S$ 47.00

About the Wine: A wonderfully balanced and well-rounded Merlot, aged for 12 months in oak barrels for added complexity. It shows pleasing aromas of berries, vanilla, and toast and is soft and harmonious on the palate. Excellent with red meat dishes. Allow to breathe before serving.

About the Winery: Founded in 1856, Cousiño Macul is the only winery in Chile amongst those established in the 19th century that continues in the hands of the original founding family. The company remains 100% under family control, producing limited quantities of fine wines. The mission of Cousiño Macul is to produce world-class wines that are unmistakably Chilean, carrying the distinctive character of the Maipo Valley. The name of the winery is derived from the family name of its founder (Matías Cousiño), plus the name given to the area where the estate was built, within the Maipo Valley: the company name implies “the Cousiño estate at Macul”. “Macul” is a word from the language spoken by the indigenous people before the discovery of America; the language is Quechua, and Macul in Quechua means “right hand”.

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Miles from Nowhere Cabernet Merlot 2016

Region: Australia, Margaret River

Retail Price: S$ 46.00

About the Wine:  Vibrant ruby red. This wine displays aromas of dark plums, blackcurrant in combination with subtle mint, sweet sage and milk chocolate. Good fruit intensity of blackcurrant Cabernet character with hints of sweet mint, combined with the juicy dark plum character from the Merlot, with balanced acidity and attractive tannin structure, giving palate length and will allow graceful aging. Best paired with Medium rare Scotch Fillet, on a bed of mash with spring fresh asparagus spears.

About the Winery: A Margaret River Winery, rated 5 star by James Halliday. “Miles from nowhere” is all about a passion for winemaking; with this passion, the winery gathered little pockets of exceptional land and vineyards, scattered across the Margaret River region of Western Australia and based their winemaking on a property in Cowaramup. In their winemaking, they passionately crafted wine to bring some of the “terroir”, the relaxed time and space, and the “palate” of the region into the wine glass. The focus is to produce serious wine in a serious package, yet retain the essential ingredients of excitement, fun and enjoyment.

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Chateau Grand Barrail Lamarzelle Figeac Saint Emilion Grand Cru 2012

Region: France, Bordeaux, Saint Emilion

Retail Price: S$74.00

About the Wine:  Intense color with attractive fresh, red fruit notes, and hints of torrefaction. Supple and smooth on the attack, the wine becomes rounded and aromatic on the palate, underpinned by a framework of delicate tannins. Highly elegant and fruity wine, boasting great freshness.

About the Winery: The very favourable weather conditions from the last week in August onwards ensured very homogeneous ripening of the dominant Merlot variety, with lots of aromas, colour and good balance. The rain in mid-September did not upset the process ; the perfectly tended vineyard resisted well to the threat from Botrytis, while the vein of blue clay “mopped up” the excess water.

11 lots of ripe berries undergo pre-fermentation maceration of 7 to 10 days at 7°C. The fermentation which takes place afterwards for 7 to 10 days transforms the richly coloured musts with powerful fruit aromas.



Lis Neris Red 2010


Lis Neris Red 2010

Region: Italy, Friuli

Retail Price: S$106.00

About the Wine:  Lis Neris is the main red wine from the estate. It distinguishes itself for its Bordeaux-like profile (90-95% Merlot and 5-10% Cabernet Sauvignon) and for its full-blooded Friulian character. A warm and rich wine, with refined tannins and a very long aftertaste. The first vintage of production was 1989, when Cabernet had the main role, but through the years Merlot got more and more dominant, bringing in its warmth and smoothness.

About the Winery: Lis Neris is located in the center of the famous wine growing region of Friuli, in the village of San Lorenzo, between the Slovenian border to the North and the right bank of the Isonzo river to the South. More than 60 hectares of vineyards are planted in the most beautiful part of a broad shelf of calcareous gravel, dragged down by the melt waters from the glaciers of the Eastern Alps. San Lorenzo, which is a cooler area, is where most of the white varieties are grown while Corona and Romans, are warmer zones to the West of the winery, and where the reds are mainly planted. It is here that, since 1879, four generations of the Lis Neris family have worked passionately to help create and develop one of Friuli’s most representative wine estates. In 1981 turning point materialized at the winery, and a new approach to production occurred. White wines proved to be the best expression of “terroir” and thus became the focal of production at Lis Neris. Today, Les Neris Estate prominent standards apply both to there vineyard and wine practice. There goal is to produce the highest quality of wines while creating the ideal growing conditions.

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