Bright in terms of clarity, Petaluma’s 2005 merlot from Coonawarra has an intense colour somewhere between purple and ruby. On the nose, expect a clean aroma that is a pronounced expression of black cherries, spices, vanilla oak and an almost raisin like character. On the palate, the wine is dry, with considerable length and tannins, dark fruits and raisins apparent. A bit less oak, and slightly less over the top ripe fruit, and this wine would have been unstoppable. As it is, the wine is still very good, and stood up well as a high quality example in a blind line-up. 90 points.