Our Napa Valley Merlot is grown in the Carneros AVA, a vineyard with rocky, well-drained soils, and a desirable southern exposure. This excellent microclimate allows winemaker Amy Thorn to craft an elegant Merlot that embodies the opulent black fruit aromas and flavors with the firm tannins typical of the valley’s cooler southern microclimates. The terroir produces grapes with distinctive, true-to-varietal flavors, bright acidity, and a muscular structure that is ideal for aging.
In 2014, a warm, dry spring initiated early bud break. Ideal weather conditions produced trouble-free vine flowering and grape set. Consistent summer sunshine created a steady, even ripening producing grapes with wonderful flavor concentration. Our hand-harvested merlot grapes were picked in mid-October with an optimum balance of sugar and acidity
After a five day cold soak, winemaker Amy Thorn ferments our Merlot in a mix of small closed and open-top stainless steel tanks, pumping the fermenting juice over the ‘cap’ of skins and other solids that form at the top of the tank to fully extract color, flavor and tannin from the skins. Once fermentation completes, we transfer the new wines to carefully selected French oak barrels (60% new in 2013), where they age for 26 months in the barrel before being blended prior to bottling.
Our 2019 Napa Valley Merlot immediately captures attention with its lush and bright aromas of berries, and cocoa, and delivers mouth-filling black cherry and plum flavors. The Thorn Hill Merlot represents everything this grape can produce. The wine’s beautiful purity, stunning texture, and overall ripeness are what Merlot is all about. Full-bodied and beautifully balanced, it is immensely appealing now but will profit from another 7 – 10 years’ aging.
Grape Variety: 100% Merlot
Harvest: Mid-October 2019
Vineyards: Carneros AVA , Napa Valley
Acidity: .65 g/100L
Bottled: Unfined and unfiltered