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Merlot Wine Details
Price: $40.00 per bottle

Description: Having lost all of our usual Walla Walla Valley fruit in the 2004 freeze we were challenged to build a merlot which paralleled the 2003 wine. Fortunately two great vineyards stepped up for us. Bacchus, part of the venerable Sagemoor Farms and Desert Hills, the Den Hoed family farm on Snipes Road near Grandview provided us with beautiful merlot grapes. The Bacchus Vineyard Columbia valley fruit is deep, dark and classic. We have some of the best rows in Block 8. Todd Cameron and Kent Waliser, Boudreaux addicts, made sure we got the good stuff. The Desert Hills Block 52 (a good year) was planted in the Yakima Valley in 1987 on the very shallow soils over sandstone. Andy Den Hoed and Brett Calhoun produced fruit for us with bright elegant acidity, a perfect counter-balance for the deep ripeness of the Bacchus fruit. For fifteen months I topped these barrels with syrah just to add a faint hint of cinnamon-pepper to the recipe. The oak regime was fifty percent neutral French and Minnesota oaks.

Varietal Definition
Merlot is known as a Noble Bordeaux varietal. Although it came to France in the first century, it was not named until the 1880s. Merlot was originally used only for blending, as it is soft and compliant, very useful in softening other Bordeaux wines like Cabernets. Recently in California and Chile it became popular as a 100% varietal wine. Merlot tends to be easier to grow in a variety of soil conditions and is harvested earlier in the year than Cabernet. Although most Merlots are made to be drunk earlier, there are many with complexities of a Cabernet. Flavors of plum, black cherry, violet, chocolate and orange pair well with rich, red pasta dishes, hearty chicken dishes, and any beef combination that you fancy. The perfect match of course is chocolate. Not only does the chocolate compliment the wine and vice-versa, but the essence of both flavors linger eternally.
Cabernet Sauvignon:
Cabernet Sauvignon is the most widely planted and significant among the five dominant varieties in France’s Bordeaux region, as well as the most successful red wine produced in California. Though it was thought to be an ancient variety, recent genetic studies at U.C. Davis have determined that Cabernet Sauvignon is actually the hybrid offspring of Sauvignon Blanc and Cabernet Franc. Cabernet Sauvignon berries are small with black, thick and very tough skin. This toughness makes the grapes fairly resistant to disease and spoilage and able to withstand some autumn rains with little or no damage. It is a mid to late season ripener. These growth characteristics, along with its flavor appeal have made Cabernet Sauvignon one of the most popular red wine varieties worldwide.


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