Duckhorn Merlot Three Palms Napa Valley 750ml
Once again, the famed Three Palms Vineyard has yielded a fascinating and luxuriously full-bodied Merlot. Aromas of huckleberry, black cherry, chocolate and fig rise from the glass, followed by hints of graphite, graham cracker, bay leaf and sage. On the mouth-watering palate the flavours are intense and complex, with velvety tannins and voluptuous fruit balanced by earthy undertones and Duckhorn Merlot Three Palm's classic minerality, all of which carry the wine to a rich and remarkably long finish.
Winemaker Renee Ary works with each vineyard block separately and harvests when flavours are optimal and tannins are their softest. She approaches winemaking in an artisinal manner, by tasting and blending from close to 200 lots, separately barrel ageing each lot in oak from various cooperages. The result are wines of great finesse, personality and depth.
One of California’s first single-vineyard Merlots, this full-bodied Duckhorn Merlot reflects Three Palms’ unique terroir and has been a consistent benchmark for New World Merlot.
The 2018 vintage offered near picture-perfect growing conditions, with mild spring and summer weather, and no significant heat events. The excellent growing conditions naturally resulted in a slightly larger than average crop for red Bordeaux varieties, with fully lignified seeds at low sugars levels. With temperate weather throughout fall, they were able to pick each block at optimal ripeness, yielding exceptionally juicy and polished red wines, with plush, well-rounded tannins, and lovely overall structure.
This vineyard is noted for its three iconic palm trees. The warm, up valley vineyard features lean soils that cause the vines to send their roots deep in search of nutrients, producing an intense, age-worthy wine with complex fruit and mineral layers. Composed of 100% estate fruit; the 2018 blend features 89% Merlot, 7% Cabernet Sauvignon, 3% Cabernet Franc, 0.5% Petit Verdot and 0.5% Malbec (as per American wine labelling regulations a wine can be labelled as a single varietal if it contains at least 75% of that grape. This is standard practice in many wine regions). The wine ages in 100% French oak barriques (227L) for 18 months; 75% new oak and 25% Neutral oak.