Verite La Muse 2008
Merlot from Sonoma County, California
With supple fruit and spice, exceptional balance and impressive length, Vérité La Muse is crafted primarily from Merlot. From its inception, every vintage of this special wine – which honors the style of the great wines of Pomerol while celebrating the quality of our world-class fruit grown in Sonoma County — has received outstanding critical acclaim.
Blend: 90% Merlot, 7% Cabernet Franc, 3% Malbec
The Wine Advocate - "A blend of 90% Merlot, 7% Cabernet Franc and 3% Malbec (52% Chalk Hill, 45% Alexander Mountain Estate and 3% Bennett Valley fruit), the 2008 may have even greater intensity and richness than the 2007. Still young and unformed, it exhibits phenomenal richness and equilibrium as well as a finish that lasts nearly a minute. Its dense plum/purple color is accompanied by notions of black fruits, forest floor, truffles and spring flowers. It should age for 25-30+ years."
Wine Enthusiast - "A pinch of hard tannins gives this bone-dry young wine an astringent toughness. It shows very fine, concentrated black-cherry, cocoa and crème de cassis flavors. Aging in almost 100% new French oak adds notes of toast that the fruit easily tolerates. Nearly all Merlot, it’s a wine of considerable volume, but nowhere near ready to drink. Give it at least six years in a proper cellar, and it could be one of the rare Merlot-based California wines capable of extended aging."
International Wine Cellar - "Bright red-ruby. Inviting nose offers cherry, raspberry and chocolate truffle. Explosive on the front half, with sexy spices lifting and intensifying the redcurrant fruit. Today the wine's tannins give the finish a slightly dry quality but the intensity and subtle persistence of this wine suggest that it simply needs time. Pierre Seillan typically does a pre-fermentation cold soak lasting four or five days, then about eight days of fermentation and no post-fermentation maceration. The malolactic fermentation takes place in barrels of various toast levels and from numerous French forests.
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Verite Estate Winery
French for 'truth', Vérité reflects our commitment to crafting the most authentic expression of the vineyard.
Simply put, but profound in its intent, we are dedicated to producing red wines of style and substance using traditional methods and the finest fruit from mountain vineyards throughout Sonoma County.
The Vérité Estate is located in the foothills of the Mayacamas Mountain range at the southern tip of Sonoma County's Alexander Valley. Our unique location is just north of the confluence of the Chalk Hill and Knights Valley appellations, an area know for superior soil, climate, and potential to express a strong sense of terroir. View all Verite Estate 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.