Connoisseurs’ Guide to California Wine
This outstanding effort from a long-time champion of Merlot conveys all of the plush and outgoing black cherry fruit that marks the very best varietal bottlings. It is full and fleshy with just the right touch of structural grip, and it has real potential for growth even while being inviting now. It will satisfy in the short term with a juicy Porterhouse steak, but it is bound to get better and will gain in complexity for six to ten years.
4+ Stars - Excellent
Ronn Weigand, Restaurant Wine
A fleshy, finely flavored, well balanced, full bodied Merlot of excellent quality. It is intensely flavored, and very long on the finish, tasting of red currant, toast, mint, sour cherry, and blueberry. One of the winery’s best ever Merlots.
Robert Whitley, Wine Review Online
Remarkable is really the only way to describe the commitment to quality and consistency that you will find in the wines of Duckhorn. The Napa Valley Merlot is the most basic of Duckhorn offerings, and yet it is the same benchmark now that it was when Duckhorn carved a niche for Napa Valley Merlot in the early 1980s, a time when most Merlot was grown for its blending possibilities. This vintage of Duckhorn Napa Merlot is classic: a well proportioned red that exhibits concentrated aromas of black cherry, plum and currant, a note of sweet oak vanillin and spice, and beautifully integrated, supple tannins. While it's drinking well right now, it certainly has the structure to cellar for a decade or more.
Steve Heimoff, Wine Enthusiast
They’re emphasizing structure over decadence. But that’s not to say there aren’t rich, elaborate berry, cherry, currant, chocolate and cedar flavors that provide bang for the buck. Very elegant and refined, this Merlot should be decanted before serving.
Best Wine Gifts
Andrea Robinson, andreawine.com
Our 2007 Duckhorn Vineyards Napa Valley Merlot is featured as one of 'The Best Wine Gifts for Christmas' on www.andreawine.com.
Mary Ewing-Mulligan, Wine Review Online
Duckhorn is simply a master at Merlot. This 2007 is maybe a bit lighter than the 2006, but its refinement is compelling. The aromas and flavors express richness and ripeness - plum, cassis and chocolate, with accents of cedar and lead pencil - but they are somewhat restrained for a California wine, and show good concentration. The rest of the wine, the texture and structure, is heavenly: medium-plus body, shy of full-bodied; fine-grained tannins from oak that do not overpower the flavors; gentle, velvety texture; alcohol (14.5%) held well in balance by the tannin and acid; a long evolution across the palate; and a rich but breathy finish. This wine is even nicer on the second day than on the first.
Best of the Best 5-Star California Merlots - Best of Show
Quarterly Review of Wines -
Rich, round, pure, silky, utterly complete, black cherry and mocha flavors – perfection itself.