Rustenberg John X Merriman Bordeaux Blend
WHY WE LOVE IT
- This wine is named after a former owner of Rustenberg, John Xavier Merriman, who bought the farm in 1892 in sympathy with farmers suffering from the phylloxera crisis. He played a great role in revitalizing Rustenberg and in promoting the tourism and agricultural value of Ida’s Valley, the area close to the town of Stellenbosch in which Rustenberg is situated.
- The John X Merriman is Rustenberg’s Estate wine, a blend of Bordeaux varietals that illustrate the ageability and true expression of Rustenberg’s finest vineyards, which are located in Simonsberg and Stellenbosch
Varietal Composition: 52% Merlot, 41% Cabernet Sauvignon, 5% Malbec, 1% Cabernet Franc, 1% Petit Verdot
Elaboration: The fruit is crushed and destemmed. Stainless steel fermentation. Pumped Over During Ferment. Extended maceration period of 7 days. Wine is aged for 20 months, 35% new French Barriques, 65% 2nd and 3rd fill.
Tasting Notes: The John X Merriman is a powerful wine that rewards aging. In its youth the wine is worth decanting and expresses cassis, black currant and dark fruits complemented with cigar tobacco and sour cherry notes. As the wine ages and its fine grained tannins soften a softer more savory palate develops revealing wonderful drinkability and tertiary complexity
2014 – 90 Wine Advocate
2018 – 92 Vinous
In 1941 Peter and Pamela Barlow bought Rustenberg, later acquiring Schoongezicht and reuniting the properties. Their son Simon took over the running of the farm in 1987. Simon’s son, Murray, joined in the running of the farm with his father in 2012. The Barlows have been at Rustenberg for over 70 years: the longest period any one family has owned the farm.
The Rustenberg Estate stands on an impressive 880 hectares against the iconic Simonsberg Mountain in Stellenbosch. When standing in the high vineyards of the Estate, the entire vista of Stellenbosch is revealed, with a glimpse of Table Mountain in the distance. Of the 880 hectares making up the Estate, 110 hectares are under vine (with plans to plant some more vines in the next year or so), 200 hectares make up the beautiful pastures and farmland for their cattle to graze on, a portion hosts the historical farm and winery buildings and other structures, and the rest of Rustenberg is comprised of conservation land, made up of natural “fynbos” (the indigenous flora of the Cape) and a myriad of wildlife (including porcupines, caracals, and cape leopard).