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Today's Wine Tasting Note

© Copyright 1998 by Robin Garr. All rights reserved.


Corbans vineyard
Corbans vineyard scene from the winery's Website.

As one more piece of evidence that this Merlot thing has gotten out of control, here's one from New Zealand, a place not widely known for its reds. The good news, however, is that it turns out to be a rather pleasant red table wine, reasonably competitive at the $10 price point. I'm told that Longridge is a label of Corbans, one of New Zealand's larger and well-respected wineries.

Corbans 1995 "Longridge" Hawkes Bay (NZ) Merlot ($9.99)
Clear garnet color. Appetizing aromas of cassis and dark chocolate with an intriguing smoky edge. Flavors follow the nose, tart-cherry fruit with a slight, pleasant herbaceous quality. Quite acidic, but with plenty of fruit to hold it in balance. I didn't bring high expectations to a modest New Zealand Merlot, but it exceeded them substantially. U.S. importer: Dreyfus, Ashby & Co., NYC. (Jan. 23, 1998)

FOOD MATCH: Fine with a roast chicken.

All my wine-tasting reports are consumer-oriented. In order to maintain objectivity and avoid conflicts of interest, I purchase all the wines I rate at my own expense in retail stores.

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