Northstar Columbia Valley Merlot 2007
Merlot from Columbia Valley, Washington
75% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Sauvignon, 5% petit verdot.
Well balanced with a nose and flavors of raspberry, plum, and cherry, leading into notes of vanilla, coconut, and spice on the palate. Lots of structure and balanced tannins make this a great wine to pair with food. Enjoy!
Wine Enthusiast - "From a superb year, this wine saw all French oak, but an ongoing reduction in exposure to new barrels brought the percentage down to 60%. Young and muscular, the blend of black fruits, sweet oak and toasty spice is focused and compelling. Pure fruit flavors include black cherry and plum, smooth and concentrated, with a smoky kick in the lingering finish."
The Wine Advocate - "The 2007 Merlot Columbia Valley was blended from 14 vineyards while the wine was made with 40-60% whole berries depending upon the site. It was aged for 18 months in 60% new French oak. It reveals a nose of pain grille, pencil lead, spice box, lavender, cassis, and black currant. Medium to full-bodied on the palate, this impeccably balanced wine is loaded with raspberry, plum, and black fruit flavors, has outstanding density, and a long, fruit-filled finish. Give it another 3 years of cellaring and drink it from 2013 to 2022."
Wine Spectator - "Dense and chewy, featuring a sweetness and suppleness that make the earthy cherry and blackberry flavors weave through the tannins, emerging on the long finish with finesse. Best from 2012 through 2016."
International Wine Cellar - "Medium red. Aromatic nose combines plum, cherry, cedar, graphite and wild mint. At once dense and juicy, with good balance and freshness to the red fruit and tobacco flavors. This fresh, firmly tannic merlot finishes with very good chewy lift and a whiff of aromatic oils."
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Northstar, located in Walla Walla, Washington, aims to make Merlots that can be considered among the world's best, using fruit sourced from one of the world's best regions for the variety: Washington state. Winemaker, David "Merf" Merfeld, blends New World fruit with an old world winemaking style, influenced by Bordeaux's "right bank," to create his highly-acclaimed wines. Northstar produces two Merlot-based wines from the Columbia Valley and Walla Walla AVAs, as well as the Stella Maris red blend and extremely limited production bottlings of the blending component varieties that Merf uses as his "spice box" in creating Northstar's Merlots. View all Northstar Wines
About Columbia ValleyView a map of Columbia Valley wineries
Columbia Valley is the largest of Washington State's wine growing regions, with almost 11 million acres. It encompasses a number of smaller regions, including Yakima Valley, Walla Walla Valley, Red Mountain and more. The vast area consists of a range of climates, allowing viticulturists to plant a diverse selection of grape varieties. Most wineries plant rows sparsely, which helps the vines survive the harsh winters.
Notable FactsMerlot is the most popular and most planted grape of the area, followed by Cabernet Sauvignon and Chardonnay. Syrah and Riesling are also popular and continue to grow in acreage.
About WashingtonRelated Links:Now the number two producer in the United States, Washington State has also grown in quality.
So how does a state known for rain and coffee produce high quality wines? They plant their grapes on the east side of the Cascade mountains, away from that ever-present rain cloud that sits along the coast. Perhaps wine grapes do well since the sandy loam soils east of the Cascade range give way to an almost desert-like land, saved from drought only by the helpful rivers that run through the area – and the good irrigation systems.
Thinking that the state would do best with typical northern growing grapes like Riesling and Gewurtztraminer, turns out the apple state is well-suited for reds, namely Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and, more recently, Syrah. Of course, whites have not been forgotten - Washington State Rieslings range from bone-dry to sweet, are well-structured and high quality, and Chardonnay dominates most of the other white plantings, making a range of wines. But the reds of the region, Merlot in particular, have made Washington State a quality force to be reckoned with.
Customer ReviewsSign In to Add Your Review3 }div>3.1 out of 5 stars
- 5 Stars: 1
- 4 Stars: 2
- 3 Stars: 2
- 2 Stars: 1
- 1 Stars: 1
7 ratings, 2 with reviewsVA Collector - Burke, VA110/28/2012310/2/2012Mediocre merlotah_le_bourgogne_cest_mieux - Brooklyn, NY21/28/2012
Bought this inspired by other reviewers. This is OK, but very boring. Very American, but in a disappointing sort of way. Very formatted wine. Kind of a bummer. Normally love columbia valley wines. If you only drink this sort of wine, you will end up not liking anything else. Also, like most American wines, this is just totally overpriced. I mean 40 bucks for this. Gimme a break. I can get way nicer French wine in Brooklyn for 15-30 bucks.410/15/2011Preman - Richardson, TX48/15/201138/14/2011Jim Bailey - Millville, NJ57/18/2011
- Smooth & Supple
Alcohol By Volume GuideMost wine ranges from 10-16% alcohol by volume. Some varietals tend to have higher (for example Zinfandel and Cabernet Sauvignon) or lower alcohol levels (Pinot Noir and many white varietals), but there is always some variation from producer to producer. Some wine falls outside of this range, for instance Port weighs in closer to 20%, while Muscat and Riesling are usually a bit below 10%.
Wine Style Guide
Light & Fruity
- Red wines that are more fruit-forward and lighter in tannin and body.
Smooth & Supple
- Medium bodied reds that go down easy, with smooth tannins and supple fruit.
Earthy & Spicy
- Wines where earthy and/or spicy dominate the flavors – typically medium to full body.
Big & Bold
- Full bodied wines that have concentrated fruit and are higher in alcohol and/or tannins. Some need age.
- 5 Stars: