Merlot has long been a favorite program of ours, so it was with great delight that in 2012 we began making it again after a four year hiatus. This wine continues to improve year after year, owing to the time the soil spent fallow. This big red presents very closely to the cabernets produced in the same area, with floral cherry aromas on the nose, moving into deeper pepper and barrel spice characteristics. Chewy tannins compete with a burst of fresh fruit characters on the palate. Certainly not your average Merlot.
IN THE VINEYARD
The cane-pruned vines were hand-harvested from our Venge Estate vineyard in Oakville. The 2014 vintage was both hot and dry, producing fruit of outstanding depth and concentration. Now in their 29th year, we continue to dry-farm these vines by not allowing them any applied summer irrigation. Their roots must continue to dig deep to find water, tapping into untouched soils as they descend, and furthering the overall complexity of flavor.
IN THE CELLAR
With a little extra hang-time, the perfectly ripe fruit arrived in the cellar in October. The fruit was destemmed, then placed in a combination of small stainless steel tank fermenters and open top barriques. Time on skins lasted 12 to 29 days. The fruit was then separated to “free run” and “light press” fractions. The Merlot was aged in 60% new, tight-grained, French oak barrels for 18 months. Each year we bring back our favorite cooperages for the aging process: Alain Foquet, Boutes, Taransaud, Sylvain, and Gamba.
100% native, spontaneous yeast and malolactic fermentations were also key ingredients in the making of this wine. The gentle use of gravity flow winemaking, whenever possible, is carefully exercised throughout the making of this and every Venge wine. Bottled unfiltered.
330 Cases Produced