The diversity of the soils, slopes and elevations all add to the quality of Plaisir de Merle fruit. Well-drained weathered granite soils (predominantly Tukulu and Hutton) with good water retention allow minimal interference in irrigation with most vineyards being dry land. There are two vineyards that contribute to this wine: the first was planted in 1993 and is situated between 250 m and 300m above sea level on the south-eastern slopes of the Simonsberg; the second is five years younger and situated on the lower slopes of the Simonsberg at about 150 m above sea level. Viticulturist: Freddie le Roux
The older vineyard produces wine with loads of spice and white pepper and the younger contributes berry fruit and concentrated plum flavours. The grapes were harvested on the 11th and 12th of March respectively and fermented separately in stainless steel tanks. After crushing, yeast was added and the juice was pumped over the skins daily to extract colour until fermentation was completed. Upon completion of fermentation the wine was left on the skins for a further week to macerate and then racked and transferred to barrels for further maturation. The wine was matured in a combination of new and second-fill American and French
oak for 12 to 16 months.
This enticing wine has a dark red colour, with a bouquet of sweet spices, red cherries, with a hint of sweet oak vanilla. Full-bodied, with a rich texture, dark red fruit, with peppery and sweet oak flavours that linger on the aftertaste. The wine is ready to drink now, but it will gain in complexity and character with further cellaring until 2023.
This wine is an ideal partner to a juicy steak or Osso Bucco.