Our Napa Valley Merlot is a complex blend of several individual vineyard lots, incorporating fruit from our estate vineyards and from top independent growers throughout the Napa Valley. The final wine is a rich and cohesive expression of the entire Napa Valley, reflecting the varied microclimates and soils of this unique appellation.
Varietal Content: 85% Merlot, 12% Cabernet Sauvignon, 2% Cabernet Franc, 1% Petit Verdot; Cooperage: 100% French Oak; Age of Barrels: 40% New, 60% Neutral
The 2015 growing season yielded a classic expression of Napa Valley Merlot, with a fleshy entry and juicy layers of Bing cherry, raspberry and plum, along with hints of blueberry, cedar, vanilla and clove. Underscored by polished tannins, the juiciness of the entry evolves into a lush, silky texture that carries the flavors to a long, generous finish marked by notes of freshly ground coffee beans with a splash of ripe, red cherry.
In Napa Valley, a warm, dry spring resulted in any early budbreak, while an extended flowering period brought a return to normal yields after three years of abundant crops. With berry weights down, the grapes offered great concentration, while retaining excellent acidity. We had one of our earliest harvests in the past decade, with our first white grapes arriving at the winery on July 31st. A light rain in mid-September nourished the vines, while providing welcome additional hangtime. Overall, the quality of the fruit was exceptional, with our white wines showing both richness and complexity, and our red grapes displaying a fine balance between elegance and intensity, with gorgeous dark fruit flavors.