Merlot from the Ranch 9 Vineyard underpins this wine and provides rich, red fruit tones to the mid-palate. The Ranch 9 Vineyard is located at the Southeast end of the Oak Knoll District. Due to its proximity to the San Pablo Bay, this vineyard tends to be cooler during the afternoon, which is critical for growing rich and complex Merlot. Also blended in is Merlot from the Mitchell Vineyard that sits halfway up the hill on the Western slope of the Mayacamas Mountains in the Northwest corner of the Oak Knoll District near the town of Yountville. This area tends to be a bit warmer and adds the dark fruit and brambles to the wine.
The final blend is completed with 6% of Cabernet Sauvignon from our estate vineyard in Oak Knoll District in Napa Valley. All of the wine was aged in 40% new French oak, 10% new American oak (both medium plus and heavy toast), and 50% neutral barrels for 22 months.
Lovely aromas of wild berries, ripe plums, sweet spice, vanilla and oak grace the nose. Bright and lush red fruit flavors of cherry and plum are followed by dark chocolate and mouth-watering raspberry flavors on the mid-palate. The finish is very long and filled with reverberating flavors of cherry, espresso and vanilla. This Merlot is wonderfully balanced with fruit, acidity, and oak all contributing to a classy and delicious wine.
v 70% Ranch 9 Monticello Road
v 24% Mitchell Vineyard
v 6% Cabernet Sauvignon: Estate Vineyards, Oak Knoll
Harvest date: September 16-17, 2015 Bottling date: July 11, 2017
Cases produced: 400
Bottle size: 750 mL
Titratable Acidity: 5.70 g/L pH: 3.64
Alcohol: 14.5% Winemaker: Bradley Smith Retail Price: $45
2015 Harvest Challenge – Gold & 94 points