The Merlot Retrospective Part Deux: 2015 through 2018

Ready for round two of our Merlot retrospective?!

Great, because here it comes!! Without any further ado let’s kick things off with our 2015 release:

2015 MTGA Napa Valley Merlot

If you are looking for the most approachable, easy drinking Merlot we have made the 2015 vintage is for you. The long bloom that resulted in quite a bit of shatter and low yields in the vineyards concentrated all of those flavors and complexities in what fruit remained. The resulting characteristics are very intense but extremely well integrated. It has continued to be a fan favorite since its release last October and shows no signs of slowing down. This release is dominated by dark cherry and blueberry flavors with the oak just peeking through to give you an extra layer of “yum” factor.

Similar to the 2011 vintage, our 2015 Merlot is one that is worth drinking now but will continue to age beautifully if you have the patience to do so.

2016 MTGA Napa Valley Merlot

We are pure excited to get this release out into the world later this fall! It has been a long time since we have seen this level of complexity and intensity this early on in our Merlot. The 2016 vintage, as it is tasting this summer, is incredibly similar to the 2012 vintage. It is dee-lish right out of the gate and will offer more and more of that as the next few years go on. As always our newest releases are ready to drink as soon as they make it to your door and the 2016 is no exception.

I might go as far to say that the 2016 Merlot is the “best” we have made thus far, but I will leave that to you!

2017 MTGA Napa Valley Merlot

After a super tough morning of tasting through all of our Merlot lots to finalize this blend in late July, our 2017 Merlot has finally made its way into bottle for one more year of aging before it is released next fall! The next year of aging in bottle will work wonders for this newly bottled vintage. The final blend shows some AMAZING potential of big structure balanced out by beautiful, rich fruit characteristics. It was a very tough process to finalize the exact quantities of each lot to include in this final blend but well worth the time and effort!

2018 MTGA Napa Valley Merlot

The baby of the bunch! With less than a full year in barrel our 2018 Merlot is just starting to come together. Tasting these barrel samples nearly a year into the aging process always provides some excitement for not just finalizing this blend next summer but the coming harvest to do it all over again! As soon as we hit the 6-9 month aging time frame with our Merlots we start to taste all of the characteristics coming together. The fruit and oak flavors start to balance each other out. The structure starts to soften and give way to extra layers of complexity. This future release has a long ways to go but we are definitely starting to taste the fruits of our labor!

-Manderson