93 points – 2 Puffs
Connoisseurs' Guide to California Wines 09/01/2010
A long-time winner when it comes to Merlot, Duckhorn still ranks among the best. Rich, ripe and juicy with plenty of vanillin oak sweetening its way, this well-extracted offering shows off the varietal's supple side and yet sports a fairly firm underpinning of grippy young tannins. While it has just enough frontal richness to allow early drinking with heartier cuts of beef, this wine will show far better if given a chance to develop, and it should be left alone for four or five years.
13% Cabernet Sauvignon
7% Cabernet Franc
5% Petit Verdot
100% French oak château-style barrels (60 gallons)
Age of Barrels: 100% New
A hot site with free-draining soils, Three Palms consistently delivers focused red fruit flavors balanced by an austere minerality, which contributes to elegant aging potential. The 2006 Three Palms Vineyard Merlot delivers all the vibrant fruit one would expect, with layers of red currant, raspberry and black cherry underscored by elements of piecrust, strawberry, caramel and wet stone. The tannins are dry and elegant, leading to a long, jammy finish.
The 2006 growing season was marked by a very mild summer with a mid-July heat spike that accelerated ripening. Mild temperatures continued throughout the fall allowing for a moderately paced harvest. The long growing season brought complex and intense flavor and aroma development.
Released: April 2009