Merlot is a blend of Estate Merlot and Estate Cabernet Sauvignon. The percentage of Cabernet Sauvignon ranges from 14 to 16 percent depending on the vintage. The resulting wine is a big, world-class red wine capable of improving with bottle aging for at least 20 years in most vintages. Although the wine varies with the vintage, they have a consistent thread of complex aromas of black berry fruits, black stone fruits, chocolate, tobacco, spice and floral notes with a mineral overtone. On the palate the wine has a big silky mouth feel, well balanced, with flavors of berries, fruit, cocoa, cassis, and spice, and a long spicy finish. Fruit tannins in our wines tend to be big, but not harsh and are well integrated with the strong fruit component.
It is fermented in French oak—33% new—for 18 months before being bottled in the spring, then bottle-aged for an additional 24 months before release.