De Bortoli Windy Peak Cabernet Merlot 2005

Part of a six pack of cheapies I bought the other day at Dan’s. The Windy Peak range has often surprised me with wines that substantially overdeliver at their price points. How about this Cabernet Merlot blend, then?Varietally correct aromas of dark fruits, leafiness and a rather yummy fried bacon note (plus a hint of tinned corn, or DMS). The fruit has a slightly bright, “forced smile” character that starts to suggest industrial winemaking to me, but it stops short of being truly offensive, and is well and truly balanced by more interesting tomato vine-like aromas. The entry ushers flavours to the middle palate quickly. The palate is medium bodied and neatly balanced between those just-shy-of-confected fruit flavours and more savoury elements. Tannins are quite lovely and fine, kicking in towards the rear of the palate and carrying the wine through a finish that is satisfyingly long. Not hugely complex, but balanced and well made. No doubt this wine is excellent for the price. If one might criticize it for lacking individuality, it’s hardly a serious fault at this end of the market. Having said that, it’s also just good enough to make me pine for a better wine, if that makes sense. De BortoliPrice: $A13Closure: StelvinDate tasted: December 2007

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