2004 Merlot, Dry Creek Valley
As we release this library vintage of Merlot, I must reflect for a moment on the interesting life this grape has had. With what many people in the industry call now call “the sideways effect” , we saw the reputation of Merlot hit rock-bottom. Many Merlot producers saw a big downturn in sales, and at the same time Pinot Noir sales skyrocketed. Consequently, growers began ripping out Merlot and planting Pinot. We are excited that much of the bad Merlot out there has disappeared. I consider it to be an example of wine Darwinism. I think our 2004 Merlot is a perfect example of a survivor; it is from our estate on Bradford Mountain, where we have been growing award winning Merlot for 25 years. It is organically grown; without chemical pesticides, herbicides or fertilizers. We use the highest quality French oak barrels for 2 years of aging. 8% Cabernet Sauvignon from our estate was blended to give the wine more depth and length in the finish. The 2004 vintage really captures the terroir of Bradford Mountain; with complex earthy notes along with plumb, raspberry and floral violet with hints of tobacco and butterscotch. What I admire about my father’s winemaking style, and this wine in particular, is the depth and dynamic nature that keep the wines continually developing and changing in the glass and in the bottle. Great wine never goes out of style!