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New Release Garagiste Merricks Pinot Gris and Rosé, Plus the 2021 Terre de Feu and Terre Maritime

New Release Garagiste Merricks Pinot Gris and Rosé, Plus the 2021 Terre de Feu and Terre Maritime

2022 represents an outstanding vintage for Garagiste, one this grower believes will rival, if not exceed, the quality of the much-lauded 2021. While describing the product of this vintage as “beautiful”, Barney Flanders also reminds us “there’s just not a lot of them”. Inclement weather at flowering played havoc with his yields, with some blocks down as much as 50 to 70%. So, we’ve steeled ourselves for smaller-than-ever quantities from this impressive vintage. Our advice: when the wines hit the market, snap them up.

For several years now, Barney Flanders has been talking about promoting his Stagiaire Pinot Gris and Rosé to the Merricks label, and this small but beautiful, vintage has provided the incentive. Unlike the Stagiaire Chardonnay and Pinot Noir, which are blends of sites, these two have always been single-vineyard wines. The new livery now celebrates the innate quality and individuality of both wines and the level of farming behind them. In Barney’s words, they have “completed their apprenticeships”. Hear, hear.

Flanders isn’t chasing a particular style with his Pinot Gris, and this expression should not be buttonholed into either an Italian or Alsatian camp. Instead, it is uniquely Mornington: “textural, with lots of flavour, not hard with acidity, but fleshy and weighted with great detail,” says Barney. Regarding the Rosé, Flanders discards the pressing fractions to ensure tannin and colour add depth, structure, and an extra dimension of complexity to what is one of Victoria’s classiest savoury Rosés. From 2022, both wines are in best-ever territory.

From 2021, we can now welcome the flagship Terre de Feu Pinot Noir and Terre Maritime Chardonnay bottlings after a year’s hiatus. For Barney, 2021 was a textbook vintage, resulting in wines of great intensity, purity, length and balance. He is immensely proud of both wines, as well he should be.

The full available Garagiste range can be viewed here.

The Wines

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