Merlot Cabernet Sauvignon
Cellar Selection | Hawkes Bay
Merlot Cabernet Sauvignon
Vintage 2022 
By augmenting the structure & finesse of Cabernet Sauvignon with the vibrant fruit of Merlot, winemakers are creating elegant yet powerfully intense, red wine blends. The fruit for this dark & deeply fragrant wine is sourced from Hawkes Bay, a region renowned for producing exceptionally elegant Merlot & Cabernet Sauvignon.
Once crushed to open-top fermenters the grapes were inoculated with several strains of yeast and fermented at 28-30 degrees C. Post fermentation the parcels were pressed to oak barriques, 15% new, for 15 months maturation. The wine was blended, egg white fined and filtered to bottle.
2022 presented a warm summer punctuated with frequent rainfall which kept the vines fresh and healthy. The warm summer meant good flavours developed in the fruit but heavy rain events close to harvest meant careful harvest decision making was required to ensure the fruit could be picked in good condition. The fruit from this wine comes from a range of Villa Maria Hawkes Bay vineyards located on the Gimblett Gravels, where free draining alluvial soils temper vine vigour, resulting in low yields of ripe and concentrated fruit.
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Smooth and rich

Tasting notes

  • Dark Berry
  • Herbs
  • Spice

This deeply coloured wine displays perfumed aromas of dark berry fruits, violets and dried herbs with complexing oak spice characters. A smooth and approachable palate follows with sweet fruit, supple tannins and moreish acidity.

Pairing suggestions

How to enjoy our Merlot Cabernet

  • Red Meat
  • Mushroom
  • Mature Cheeses

Merlot Cabernet blends are particularly good when paired with robust, full-flavoured dishes, red meat and cheeses. Drink now or hold for up to 5-8 years when the wine will develop further complexity.


Best served at: 15 °C / 60 °F

Recipe pairing

Chimichurri served with grilled steak

Bursting with fresh flavours, this Chimichurri sauce will take your next steak dinner to the next level. And there’s nothing better to bring out the herbaceous and spicy characteristics of the sauce than our rich and balanced Private Bin Cabernet Merlot Malbec.

Sunny and diverse

Hawkes Bay

A significant portion of our grapes are grown in close proximity to the famous Gimblett Road growing area in the Hawkes Bay.

The free draining gravelly soil here has a devigourating effect on vines and results in red wines with enhanced structure, flavour and colour.

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