Pride Mountain Vineyards Vintner Select Merlot 2004
Merlot from Sonoma County, California
Another powerhouse that floods your senses, our Vintner Select cuvee is 100% merlot and 100% delicious. The pervasive nose on this inky black wine is filled with brown sugar, pumpkin spice, and ripe berries. The seamless palate reminds of a blackberry cobbler with flavors of dark berries and vanilla persisting right through the holiday season.
Wine Enthusiast - "Pride's regular '04 Merlot was very good. This one's better. Intensely rich and concentrated in the way of mountain wines, it shows huge, ripe cherry marmalade, black raspberry pie filling, rum and cola, mocha-choca and Asian spice flavors, enriched by smoky oak. Any really ripe wine can do that, but only one from great coastal vineyards can achieve this balance of acids and tannins. Should develop over the next ten years. "
International Wine Cellar - "Saturated, deep ruby-red. Aromas of smoky redcurrant, graphite and nutty oak, with a suggestion of chocolate liqueur. Lush on entry, then concentrated, sweet and silky-smooth, with rich, slightly high-toned flavors of plum, smoke and graphite. This has lovely sweetness and lift and finishes very long, with big, rich tannins. A major mouthful of mountain merlot."
Wine Spectator - "Not shy about showing its oak, with plenty of cedar, vanilla bean and spice, yet underneath is a delicious core of currant, blackberry and graphite. Oak returns on the finish, providing a woody mouthfeel, but there's lots of depth and concentration. Drink now through 2011. 450 cases made."
Connoisseurs' Guide - "Mountain wines often show a little less fat and a little more structural toughness than their valley-floor counterparts, and this sturdy, very deeply filled Merlot does just that. Its succulent smells of cherries, mint, chocolate and toast lead to like-minded but rather astringent flavors that are presently bound up in youthful tannins, yet its tenacious fruit fights on through at the finish and guarantees that a handsome wine will await all those who exercise five or six years of patience. "
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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 Sonoma CountyView a map of Sonoma County wineriesRelated Links:
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 Joneses, or Napa-ites if you will. Grape varieties are more varied here, from Pinot Noir and Zinfandel to Cabernet Sauvignon and Chardonnay.
Notable FactsThe largest sub-AVAs of Sonoma include Dry Creek Valley, Russian River Valley, Alexander Valley and Sonoma Valley. Each sub-AVA, with its own micro-climate, is unique in its grape varieties and styles of wine. Dry Creek makes a mean Zinfandel while Russian River produces stand up Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. The Alexander Valley makes some of the better Cabernet Sauvignons in the county and Sonoma Valley creates excellent wines from all the above varieties. Other grapes found throughout Sonoma include Sauvignon Blanc, Merlot and 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.