The Napa Valley Merlot fruit comes from diverse vineyard sites ranging from Suscol Springs Ranch in the southeastern corner of Napa Valley to sites in Rutherford and Calistoga. Suscol Springs is a unique site for Merlot that stresses the vines resulting in smaller, more concentrated fruit. Each vineyard produces differing and distinctive grapes, resulting in a complex, multi-layered Merlot that is bold and elegant, as well as concentrated and fresh. The separate lots of Merlot from each vineyard site were handharvested at night to maintain cool temperatures and integrity of the fruit. The lots were fermented in stainless steel tanks. Gentle pumpovers during fermentation extracted color, flavor and tannins from the grapeskins. The wines finished secondary fermentation in French oak barrels (48% new) where they aged until blending, then we reintroduced the final blend to barrel for full integration of toast and oak structure with the rich, ripe fruit aromas.

92 Points
Wine Review Online
92 Points
Harvest Note
The 2018 growing season kicked off with plentiful winter rainfall to replenish the soils. Steady vine growth and berry development progressed evenly throughout the summer months. Overall, the vintage was cooler than usual and grapes reached peak maturity with balanced acidity and deep fruit flavors.
Tasting Note
Aromas of blackberry and black cherry, with a background of crushed stone and violet. On the palate, concentrated fresh blackberry and black plum are supported by fine tannins, balanced by bright acidity. A lingering rich black cherry finish with a note of minerality rounds out this complex and elegant Merlot.
Technical Data
GRAPES: 99.9% Merlot; 0.1% Cabernet Sauvignon
APPELLATION: Napa Valley
PH: 3.57
ACIDITY: 0.68 g/100ml
ABV: 14.9%
AGING: 17 Months In 48% New French Oak
Unique Selling Points
  • Steep, rocky Suscol Springs vineyard provides concentrated flavors and supple tannins.
  • Matured in 44% new French oak for 17 months for greater complexity and elegance.
  • Delicious upon release. Elegance and complexity will enhance with 5-7 years aging.

About the Grape

Merlot
Merlot makes plump, succulent wines to drink young or opulently massive wines for aging. Has silky, blackberry and currant fruit, with spice, earth, tobacco and chocolate notes, and soft tannins.
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