2018 Duckhorn Vineyards Napa Valley Merlot
Inspired after a visit to Bordeaux, Dan Duckhorn produced the first vintage of Duckhorn Vineyards Napa Valley Merlot in 1978. Highlighting Estate vineyards and top sites, our renown Merlot reflects the diversity of the valley’s many appellations. Blending with Cabernet Sauvignon adds notable depth and structure, as well as signature flavors of black cherry, plum and spice.
Varietal composition: 82% Merlot, 16% Cabernet Sauvignon, 1.4% Cabernet Franc, 0.4% Petit Verdot, 0.2% Malbec
From its tempting aromas of ripe cherry and black raspberry to its sweet, dusty tannins and supple texture, this a lush and expansive expression of Napa Valley Merlot. Luxurious flavors of black plum, rhubarb crumble and chocolate-covered raspberry mingle with hints of graphite and clove on the long, vibrant finish.
For both red and white grapes, 2018 offered near picture-perfect growing conditions, with mild spring and summer weather, and no significant heat events. The conditions were ideal for both our Semillon and Sauvignon Blanc, which show beautiful tropical notes and ripe flavors at low sugars. While our Chardonnay harvest began about three weeks later than normal, the fruit arrived at the winery in pristine condition, producing dynamic and complex wines. The excellent growing conditions naturally resulted in a slightly larger than average crop for our red Bordeaux varieties, with fully lignified seeds at low sugars levels. With temperate weather throughout fall, we were able to pick each block at optimal ripeness, yielding exceptionally juicy and polished red wines, with plush, well-rounded tannins, and lovely overall structure.
0.59 g/100 ml
Aged 15 months in 100% French oak 40% new