Pride Mountain Vineyards Merlot 2005
Merlot from North Coast, California
Very ripe, blackberry and currant aromas with a trace of vanilla. Broad, expansive and even across the mid-palate, with a candy-like middle and chewy tannins. Soft edges and tremendous length. Merlot for Cab people!
Wine Spectator - "Rich and concentrated, with bold aromas of plum, currant and mocha leading to complex, layered blackberry, licorice and spice flavors that finish with a flourish of ripe, minerally tannins. Drink now through 2012. 4913 cases made."
The Wine Advocate - "The superb 2005 Merlot, a blend of fruit from Napa (70%) and Sonoma (30%), exhibits sweet plum and black currant fruit intermixed with mocha, coffee, and earth notes. This medium to full-bodied, elegant, lush, heady wine begs for consumption over the next 7-8 years."
International Wine Cellar - "Good full red. Redcurrant, tobacco, melted chocolate, mint and spicy oak on the nose. Sweet and fresh, with youthfully reticent flavors of plum, mocha and sweet herbs. Finishes with big, dusty but ultimately fine tannins. Plenty of stuffing here but in need of a couple years of additional bottle aging. "
Connoisseurs' Guide - "Wonderfully rich and well-concentrated aromas of sweet oak and optimally ripened cherries make for a stellar start here, and the wine more than lives up to its promise with powerful, keenly proportioned flavors brimming with precise varietal fruit. Big, but beautifully balanced with a long, insistent finish, it is a generous and involving Merlot even now and has the structure and strength to get better with time, and it is certain to reward that patience with increased range and richness when held for another few years."
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Pride Mountain Vineyards
Pride Mountain Vineyards is situated on the Summit Ranch, one of Napa Valley's oldest grape producers atop Spring Mountain. With over 120 years of viticulture documented there, Jim and Carolyn Pride purchased Summit Ranch and their first vintage premiered in 1991. Today, Pride Mountain Vineyards produces Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Chardonnay, Viognier and limited bottlings of Syrah and Sangiovese. View all Pride Mountain Vineyards Wines
About North CoastView a map of North Coast wineries
Beyond Napa and Sonoma in the north you find a couple of other counties producing great wine. Among these are Mendocino and Lake County. The northernmost California winegrowing regions, these two counties are right above Napa and Sonoma, geographically. Yet, wine-wise they are very different – both from their southern neighbors and from each other.
Notable FactsMendocino has a high amount of organic vintners and vines. The first winery to settle here was Fetzer, which practices organic viticulture and holds some of the most vineyard land in the area. Mendocino has many pockets of micro-climates while Lake County, being smaller in size, is less diverse climactically. As for the grapes, Chardonnay is the most popular in both counties, but there are also some excellent Sauvignon Blancs, particularly in the Lake County. In red wine, Zinfandel leads the way, followed by Rhone Blends and Petite Sirah. The reds in both counties are complex and sumptuous. Anderson Valley is a sub-AVA of Mendicino and is quite well known for its excellent cool climate, producing the delicious Roederer Estate sparkling wines and some wonderful cool-climate Syrah.
About CaliforniaIt's not rare to see a wine's country of origin listed as "California." A country into itself in the wine world, California makes enough varieties and styles to match many European wine countries. It produces a diverse range of wines that span the quality spectrum.
The most famous of the California wine regions is Napa Valley, and these wines are certainly outstanding – but it's not as broad and diverse as its larger neighbor, Sonoma County. Down south, Santa Barbara's Santa Maria Valley is well-known for its Rhône blends, as well as cool-climate varieties like Pinot and Chardonnay. The Central Coast, the largest California AVA, has many different microclimates that lead to a wide range of wines with many sub-AVAs.
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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.