Our Merlot displays deep scarlet color, lush red-fruit and spice expression and soft, silky texture. This beautifully balanced wine was created from grapes grown in Napa Valley's Los Carneros and Oak Knoll regions. Enjoy this versatile wine with grilled or roasted beef, lamb, turkey or pork. It's also fabulous with mushrooms; in risotto, polenta or pasta sauce, or grilled on the barbecue.
Silky and elegant, the 2013 Napa Valley Merlot gracefully reveals its fruit-driven character of ripe cherry and blackberry compote. Hints of dark chocolate and hazelnut meld with a savory edge of pipe tobacco and bay leaf. The well-knit acidity enlivens the mouth-filling flavors, while supple tannins frame the wine and give age worthiness. Complex baking spice nuances from three types of oak barrels; French, American and Hungarian; weave through this Merlot's generous varietal expression.
The 2013 vintage surpassed even the highly touted 2012 vintage in grape quality. A winter with very low rainfall was followed by a dry, warm spring and summer. These factors resulted in balanced vine canopies, good fruit set and small, concentrated grapes. Perfect weather throughout harvest fostered intense, beautifully balanced and expressive wines.
We choose 70 percent of the grapes from our Los Amigos Vineyard in the Los Carneros and 25 percent from the Oak Knoll American Viticultural Areas (AVAs) of Napa Valley. The Merlot grown in the cool Los Carneros AVA; closer to the San Francisco Bay; contributes bright flavors and acidity, while Merlot grapes from the Oak Knoll AVA gives the wine rich, ripe flavors and softer texture. We selected five percent Cabernet Sauvignon from Wooden Valley, which lies in the eastern side of the Napa Valley appellation. The different soil types and mesoclimates found in these appellations add to the wine's myriad of complex flavors.
The hand-harvested grapes were quickly brought to our winery and the clusters were destemmed, retaining 60 percent as whole berries to maximize fruitiness in the wine. For gentle extraction of varietal character and color, the must is cold soaked for two days before the two-week primary fermentation. Malolactic fermentation was conducted in barrels during aging to round the acidity. A selection of new barrels gave subtle oak spice complexity to this generously fruity Merlot.
Before starting at Provenance, Chris traveled the world to work harvests in many areas including Germany and Australia and returned to school to earn his Masters degree from the University of California, Davis, in 2002.
"Winemaking is about expressing the character of the place. Each vineyard has it own distinct personality. During the winemaking process we try to highlight and polish the best attributes while smoothing out any rough edges. Whether we blend fruit from different vineyards or emphasize a single vineyard block, our goal is to get all the grapes to play nice with each other. When we're successful the final wine is a harmonious expression of origin--whether that origin is a single vineyard, multiple vineyards, and appellation or a sub appellation."
|Oak Treatment||21 months, 65% French Oak, 25% American Oak, 10% Hungarian Oak (30% New Barrels)|
|Blend||95% Merlot, 5% Cabernet Sauvignon|