Merlot & Cabernet Sauvignon Blends

Structured, powerful, approachable. The structure and finesse of New Zealand Cabernet Sauvignon meets the vibrant fruit expression of our Merlot.

Merlot wine being poured into two glasses from a decanter.

New Zealand winemakers craft elegant, yet powerfully intense, red wine blends by augmenting the structure and finesse of Cabernet Sauvignon with the full, ripe fruit of Merlot.

Increasingly Merlot dominant and notable for their purity of fruit expression, these blends are exciting and approachable when enjoyed young, but are also worth holding onto, as they acquire complexity with age.

Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot blends have a long history in New Zealand, dating back to the mid-1800s.

Today almost 90% of plantings are found in Hawke’s Bay and Auckland.

“The best of these wines offer the complexity developed over life-spans of a decade or more and the plush tannins for near-immediate gratification.”

Joe Czerwinski, Wine Enthusiast, USA
Statistics for production and exports of merlot and cabernet sauvignon
Merlot blends production and export statistics
Donut graph showing regional split of merlot and cabernet sauvignon production
Varietal plantings of Merlot & Cabernet Sauvignon Blends in NZ

Typical regional styles

Climate is a major factor in defining regional styles.

Predominantly grown in the warmer regions of Auckland/Northland and Hawke’s Bay which get extended heat accumulation due to lower diurnal temperature variation.
Whilst Auckland has primarily clay-rich soils, Hawke’s Bay has a huge diversity of soils with river terraces comprising of volcanic loess, alluvial silts and deep river gravels.

Food matching 

A superb food wine, these blends are notable for their purity of fruit expression.

Approachable when young, complex, leathery and gamey with age.

Delicious partnered with red meats and game or winter casseroles, and sumptuous with a strong cheese.

Cellaring & serving

Statistics for cellar life and serving temperature for Merlot and Cabernet Blends.
Cellaring and Serving New Zealand Merlot and Cabernet Blends

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