Brass Tacks Merlot 2012
Critical AcclaimAll Vintages
"Brass Tacks is my tribute to the legacy of California’s historical winemaking practices of blending fruit from different vineyards to create rich, flavorful and harmonious wines.”
Brass Tacks was born from one of Daniel LeFrancois’s favorite phrases, “Let’s get down to brass tacks”, meaning “to the point”. When he began Brass Tacks, he did so with the goal of crafting wines that are true expressions of California’s wine growing regions and fruit.
Daniel starts by sourcing fruit from premier regions throughout California, each selected to add specific nuances to the final wine. Through traditional winemaking practices, Daniel creates wines that are reflective of classic varietal characteristics, resulting in approachable wines that are flavorful, harmonious, and food-friendly.
The largest and perhaps most varied of California’s wine-growing regions, the Central Coast produces a good majority of the state's wine. This vast district stretches from San Francisco all the way to Santa Barbara along the coast, and reaches inland nearly all the way to the Central Valley.
Encompassing an extremely diverse array of climates, soil types and wine styles, it contains many smaller sub-AVAs, including San Francisco Bay, Monterey, the Santa Cruz Mountains, Paso Robles, Edna Valley, Santa Ynez Valley and Santa Maria Valley.
While the region could probably support almost any major grape varietiy, it is famous for a few. Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon and Zinfandel are among the major ones. The Central Coast is home to many of the state's small, artisanal wineries crafting unique, high-quality wines, as well as larger producers also making exceptional wines.
With generous fruit and supple tannins, Merlot is made in a range of styles from everyday-drinking to world-renowned and age-worthy. Merlot is the dominant variety in the wines from Bordeaux’s Right Bank regions of St. Emilion and Pomerol, where it is often blended with Cabernet Franc to spectacular result. Merlot also frequently shines on its own, particularly in California’s Napa Valley. Somm Secret—As much as Miles derided the variety in the 2004 film, Sideways, his prized 1961 Château Cheval Blanc is actually a blend of Merlot and Cabernet Franc.