Kidnapper Cliffs ‘Ariki’ Hawke’s Bay 2009

Merlot from New Zealand - Hawke's Bay
Review Date : 07-Mar-2011
‘Ariki', meaning ‘chief‘ or ‘noble rank' is Kidnapper Cliffs' flagship. The 2009 vintage is 70% Merlot from ‘Zone 6', 20% Cabernet Franc from ‘Zone 11' and 10% Cabernet Sauvignon from ‘Zone 24', blocks in the Gimblett Gravels designated for the ‘Ariki' label only. Fermented to 13.5% alc. and aged in 33% new French oak for 18 months, the Merlot on 300L hogsheads, the Cabernets in 225L barriques. Impenetrable, dense, black purple-red in colour, this has a tight, densely packed nose with aromas of ripe red and black plum and berry fruits, earth and tobacco, unfolding more nuances with air time. A fulsome, rich and densely concentrated wine, this shows Merlot varietal black plum, aromatic floral elements, earth and complex tobacco flavours with richness and power, well supported by considerable extraction. The tannins are very fine-grained, and allow the succulence of the fruit render a seamlessness to the textures. Layers of interest show and grow in the glass. A wine that will keep 10-15+ years easily. 130 dozen produced. 19.5-/20 Mar 2011 RRP $55.00

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