Napa Valley Merlot 2014

Cakebread Cellars

Napa Valley Merlot 2014

Certified Sustainable, Organic or Biodynamic Green Certified

Region: America / California / Napa Valley
Grapes: 94% Merlot, 6% Cabernet Sauvignon

The Napa Valley Merlot fruit comes primarily from the Suscol Springs Estate vineyard at the southern end of the Napa Valley. Vines struggle in rocky Hambright outcrop soils planted on steep hillsides with a southern exposure. These blocks produce grapes with distinctive, true-to-varietal flavors, bright acidity and a muscular structure that is ideal for aging. Each vineyard lot is harvested, de-stemmed and crushed separately. The various lots are fermented in a mix of small closed and open-top stainless steel tanks, with pumpovers to fully extract color, flavor and tannin from the skins. After fermentation, the new wines are transferred to carefully selected French oak barrels, 38% new, where they aged for six months before being blended. The blended wine then spent an additional eleven months in barrel to impart further complexity to the wine prior to bottling.

Gold Medal, Best in Class

Los Angeles Int'l Wine & Spirits Competition

2014 vintage
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harvest note

2014 was another in a series of excellent vintages in northern California. After a rainy February, which rejuvenated the vines, a warm, dry spring led to early bud-break, flowering and grape set. Summer was consistently mild with few heat spikes, allowing the merlot grapes to ripen slowly and evenly while developing impressively concentrated flavors.

tasting note

Fragrant aromas of ripe black cherry, plum compote, blackcurrant and herbal spice introduce the lush red and black cherry, raspberry, and black plum flavors of this remarkably sumptuous Merlot. Mouth-filling and deeply concentrated on the palate, it is perfectly balanced by bright acidity and supple, fine-grained tannins, culminating in a long, spicy, cherry-laced finish. Delicious upon release, this youthful Merlot will continue to develop complexity with another 5-7 years’ aging.

food pairing

An excellent companion to pork, pheasant and veal.

technical data

GRAPES: 94% Merlot, 6% Cabernet Sauvignon
APPELLATION: Napa Valley, 58% Estate
PH: 3.57
ACIDITY: 0.71 g/100ml
ABV: 14.9%
AGING: 17 months in French oak barrels, 38% new

points of distinction

  • The steep, hilly, southern-facing Suscol Springs Estate vineyard forms the backbone (58%) of the blend
  • Matured in French oak barrels for 17 months for greater complexity and elegance
  • Delicious upon release but will continue to develop elegance and complexity with an additional 5-7 years’ aging
  • about the grape +
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“Our emphasis on fruit quality captures the expression of blackberry and black cherry in the wine.”

– Stephanie Jacobs, Winemaker

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