2007 MERLOT

California

GRAPE SOURCING
Grapes for our Merlot were selected from among the best coastal growing regions in California, mainly from Lodi and the North Coast. In these areas, warm sunny days provide optimum grape ripening, while Pacific Ocean fog create cool nights and maintain the acidity in the grapes, resulting in a balanced Merlot full of flavor.
Appellation: 74% Lodi, 9% Mendocino, 14% California

VINTAGE
A very dry winter led to early bud break, followed by a mild growing season. The few hot spells in early summer did not affect the grapes since they were not ripe enough to be impacted by the heat. Harvest started early due to very warm Mid-August weather, with vintners worried about too many grapes coming in all at once but harvest slowed considerably to with a period of unseasonably cold weather in early September. The rest of the season remained cool until harvest tapered off with mid-October rains. The long, moderate growing season ripened grapes to fully maturity, resulting in complexity and crisp acidity.
Wine analysis: 0.59% total acid, 3.56% pH, .3% residual sugar, and 13.5% alcohol, by volume

WINEMAKING
After harvest, the fruit was handled gently and fermented in stainless steel to preserve the fully fruit flavors in the grapes. The individual lots were kept separate according to their respective growing areas, and blended to balance the fruit-forward, ripeness of Lodi fruit with the crispness and structure of grapes from Mendocino and the North Coast. A portion of the blend was oak aged to add subtle toast and vanilla accents.
Varietal blend: 80% Merlot, 20% Other Red

SOMMELIER NOTES
Our Merlot is a rich garnet color, with flavors of black cherries, plums, and figs, with a soft, smooth finish. With its crisp acidity and ripe fruit flavors, this wine is an easy match with a wide range of main courses, including meats, pasta and vegetarian dishes.

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