With petulant skins prone to splitting, unreliable fruit set, a tendency to sunburn yet a dislike of too much shade, merlot probably does deserve its reputation for being difficult to grow. But the end result is so worth the trouble!
At Bonking Frog Wines, we planted our Schwartzman rootstock vines in 1996 with all these challenges in mind. Our backs still aching, the merlot grafting took place in the field a year later. And as the vineyard is also our home, we spent a lot more time than most tending to the vines, ensuring we gave them the best possible start.
In the heart of the new and exciting Geographe Wine Region, a two-hour drive from Perth in the south-west corner of Western Australia, our vineyard is ideally placed along the Preston River and within range of sweeping coastal breezes.
We use BestFarms Environmental Management Systems to monitor the soil, water, biodiversity and climate. It’s all part of our long-term vision for a sustainable vineyard.
We love making merlot the way we do, and we believe this wonderful synergy of all the elements: soil, sunshine, nature, passion and joy makes its way into the heart of every bottle.