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"Ever since I first started making a Merlot based
Bordeaux blend from our Knights Valley fruit, I've enjoyed the process. As each vintage
comes and the grapes show more and more mature flavors and complexity, the excitement has
compounded. The spectrum of aromas, flavors, colors and tannins I have to play with is
awesome in any vintage, and in 2000 I was especially enamored of the brightness of the
cherry and blackberry characteristics in the Merlot we harvested."-Ed Sbragia, Winemaster
Winemaster Ed Sbragia and vineyard manager
Bob Steinhauer first began working together with Knights Valley fruit in the late seventies. They spent the next decade learning the vineyard's
personality and understanding the varied microclimates and alluvial soil types that occurred throughout the property. Merlot is
planted in loamier soils near the center of the alluvial fan and the vines are trained and managed so that the fruit clusters are exposed to the early morning sun and shaded by their leaves from the warmer afternoon sun. "One of our values as a winery is that the vineyards are an extension of the winemaking thought process," explains Steinhauer.
Ed and Laurie kept all of the lots separate during vinification and aging to protect the subtle differences individual parts
of the vineyard exhibited. The wines were then aged in small French oak barrels for 22 months to soften the tannins and to add vanilla and sweet spice characters. The blend they chose is a lush, intense-cherry/blackberry core of 75 percent Merlot and layered 17 percent Cabernet Sauvignon to support the structure and add depth to the dark fruit aromas and flavors. Small amounts of Malbec, Petite Verdot and Cabernet Franc added more spice and fruit nuances to the palate, giving an overall impression of plushness and depth.
"Sonoma's most inland appellation, where days get hot, is home to this Merlot-based, five-varietal Bordeaux blend. It's ripe in blackberries and plums, with herb and coffee complexities. Completely dry, with soft, smooth tannins, it's a heck of a good food wine."-Wine Enthusiast
No winery or vineyard more thoroughly embodies the timeless appeal and seductive flavor of Napa Valley than Beringer Vineyards, Napa's benchmark producer since the establishment of the vineyard in 1876.
Now in its third century of crafting classic wines from Napa's finest appellations and vineyards, Beringer today is guided by the inspired partnership of celebrated Winemaster...Read More About Beringer
Twice as large as Napa in size, Sonoma County only makes about a half the amount of wine as her northeasterly neighbor. But Sonoma, with her size, is able to vouch for more diversity within her borders, including sub-AVAs that are climatically varied. The atmosphere of Sonoma is decidedly laid back and down home country style. But in wines, they are keeping up with the...Read More About Sonoma County
Bordeaux Blends The Fab Five With so much history under its belt, it's no wonder that Bordeaux has figured out the recipe to produce amazing wines. Centuries of making (and drinking) wine led to the blend that has become synonomous with Bordeaux. Winemakers in the New World replicate this formula to create successful blends in their respective regions - you may see Bordeaux blends...Read More About Bordeaux Red Blends
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