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I don’t believe I have tasted a New Zealand Merlot, so this was a new one for me.  It was slightly pale in the glass and had an almost Pinot looking hue to it.  On the nose, some cherry and cranberry notes were detected.  On the the palate it was very modern in style with Kirsch and cranberry flavors.  Not overly dry, it had some decent acidity and was rather refreshing.  I am not sure of the typicity to region, but it was an interesting twist on Merlot.  I shall have to taste more of the varietal from there to get a baseline.  This bottle was on special for $9 but usually costs $18.  A crowd pleaser because it was easy to drink and different.  87 points from me and 3 stars.  Salut….