Duckhorn Estate Grown Merlot 2006
Merlot from Napa Valley, California
This full-bodied, mouthfilling Merlot brings together grapes from five Estate vineyards to create a robust, layered wine, notable for its fruit intensity, soft, integrated tannins and bright acidity. Crafted around a core of grapes from our Rector Creek Vineyard, it displays beautiful blueberry and floral notes underscored by fresh red berry and pomegranate elements from Monitor Ledge. Our Stout and Patzimaro vineyards add depth, complexity and subtle hints of wild herbs, while our Cork Tree Vineyard contributes a velvety mid-palate and touches of plum and spice.
The 2006 growing season was marked by a very mild summer with a mid-July heat spike that accelerated ripening. Mild temperatures continued throughout the fall allowing for a moderately paced harvest. The long growing season brought complex and intense flavor and aroma development.
86% Merlot, 9% Cabernet Sauvignon, 5% Cabernet Franc
Wine Enthusiast - "Classic Duckhorn, which is to say, dry, tannic, elegantly structured and expensive. The winemaker succeeded, in this so-so year, in crafting a rich, nuanced wine of considerable interest. It may not be a longterm ager, but it’s delicious now, with deep flavors of blackberries, red currants, violets, cocoa and smoky oak, balanced with the prettiest acidity. Grows better in the glass as it breathes."
Wine & Spirits - "A dense and potently extracted style of merlot, this has smoky black cherry flavors that edge toward creosote and tar. It also has the warmth of the sun on rocky soils, like those at Duckhorn's Rector Creek Vineryard, a relatively cool site that provides the core of this wine blend. It softens with air, as it will in the company of steak."
Founded in 1976, Duckhorn Vineyards has been crafting Bordeaux varietals from the Napa Valley for over 30 years. This winemaking tradition has grown to include seven estate vineyards, located throughout the various microclimates of the Napa Valley. Focused on quality and consistency, these estate vineyards are an essential element in making wines of distinction. One of the first wineries to pioneer Merlot as a premium varietal, Duckhorn Vineyards now makes several elegant Merlot and distinctive Cabernet Sauvignon bottlings to showcase the characteristics of its vineyard sites. In addition, the winery is known for its acclaimed Sauvignon Blanc. Beginning with the 2006 vintage, Duckhorn Vineyards unveiled The Discussion, a Cabernet Sauvignon-based blend that represents the pinnacle of Duckhorn's portfolio. View all Duckhorn Vineyards Wines
About Napa ValleyView a map of Napa Valley wineries
It's hard not to think of Napa Valley when thinking of California wines. The region is, after all, the one that brought world recognition to California wine making. The area was settled by a few choice wine families in the 1960's who bet that the wines of the area would grow and flourish. They were right. The Napa wine industry really took off in the 1980's, when vineyard lands were scooped up and vines were planted throughout the county. A number of wineries emerged, from large conglomerates to small boutiques to cult classics. Cabernet Sauvignon is definitely the grape of choice here, with many winemakers also focusing on Bordeaux Blends. Whites are usually Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc.
Notable FactsWithin the Napa Valley lie smaller sub-AVAs that lend even more character specifics to the wines. Furthest south is Carneros, followed by Yountville, Oakville & Rutherford. Above those two is St.-Helena and finally, just grated an AVA, Calistoga. These areas are situated on the valley floor and are known for creating rich, smooth Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Chardonnay. There are a few mountain regions as well, nestled on the slopes overlooking the valley AVAs. Those include Howell Mountain, Stags Leap and Mount Veeder. Wines from the mountain regions are often more structured and firm, benefiting from more time in the bottle to evolve and soften.
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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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