This finely balanced Merlot demonstrates how commitment to well-drained soils, open canopies and modest yields on cool Carneros vineyard sites results in full varietal expression. South of our winery, the Thimbleberry Block of our 335-acre estate vineyards clings to the hillsides of a small valley, producing Merlot in clay soils similar to those of Pomerol in Bordeaux. This Merlot exhibits exuberant fruit, textural richness and overall elegance.
2009 was a particularly uneventful growing season in the Gloria Ferrer Carneros estate vineyards. But that means, because the fruit was able to ripen at the ideal pace, the wines from this vintage are anything but ordinary. Richly layered with ripe fruit flavors, the 2009 is a Merlot for those who truly appreciate the varietals distinctive character.
The 2009 Estate Merlot has complex aromas of black currant, plum and blackberries with a touch of mint and cedar on the nose. On the palate, it displays great balance and body with exuberant plum, red cherry and mocha hints creating a long and full finish.
The ideal weather and moderate yields of 2009 produced still wines with an abundance of fruit flavor and complexity. Our winemakers believe this will be one of the most memorable vintages in a decade. The grapes ripened slowly and evenly. The wines show great concentration.
• The grapes were de-stemmed and lightly crushed
• Cold soaked for three days, then fermented at 85?F
• Gentle pump-overs three times daily
• Racked and returned to barrel twice
• Bottled unfined
• Barrel aged in one third new oak for 12 months
• 84% French, 11% Hungarian, 5% American oak barrels