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Duckhorn Estate Grown Merlot 2001

Merlot from Napa Valley, California
  • WE94
  • RP94
  • WS91
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Winemaker Notes

Deep ruby color. Aromas of sweet strawberry jam, blackberry, black cherry, and blueberry fruits; it has a flinty mineral component and some vanilla. The core of the wine is of sweet blackberry fruit with custard and vanilla; round, lush tannins are well integrated.

Critical Acclaim

WE 94
Wine Enthusiast

Graceful, delicious, complex and drinkable. Super-oaky, with vanilla, toast and wood spice, but the massive cherry and blackberry fruit easily absorbs it. The tannins are rich and ripe, forming a dusty coating that carries sweetness through the finish. Beautiful, extraordinary Napa Merlot.

RP 94
The Wine Advocate

The 2001 Merlot Estate reveals similar coffee bean, red and black currant characteristics intermixed with notions of licorice, herbs and underbrush. Richer and slightly fuller-bodied than the regular Napa cuvee, it exhibits a more saturated plum/purple color, lots of dark fruits and a lush, full-bodied mouthfeel.

WS 91
Wine Spectator

A rich and deftly balanced yet muscular red, with layers of complex currant, spice, wild berry and plum fruit that's focused and pure. Shows off a nice touch of cedary-vanilla oak, which adds a nice flavor dimension and the tannins add structure. Finishes with complexity and fine length.

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Duckhorn

Duckhorn Vineyards

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Duckhorn Vineyards, , California
Duckhorn
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.

Argentina

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Stretching from the Andes to Patagonia, Argentina's unique terroir lends to high quality wines. Formerly associated with inexpensive bulk wine but dramatically shifting focus from quantity to quality, Argentina is the most important wine-producing country in South America. Certainly excellent values abound here still, but increases in vineyard investment, improved winery technology, and a commitment to innovation since the late 20th century have contributed to the country’s burgeoning image as a producer of great wines at all price points. The climate here is diverse but generally continental and agreeable, with hot, dry summers and cold snowy winters—a positive, as snow melt from the Andes Mountains can be used to irrigate vineyards. Grapes very rarely have any difficulty achieving full ripeness.

Mendoza, a large and famous region responsible for more than 70% of Argentina’s wine production, is further divided into several sub-regions, including Luján de Cuyo and the Uco Valley. Red wines dominate here, especially Malbec, the country’s star variety, while Chardonnay is the most successful white. The province of San Juan is best known for blends of Bonarda and Syrah. Torrontés is a specialty of the La Rioja and Salta regions, the latter of which is also responsible for excellent Malbecs grown at very high elevation.

Torrontes

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Unapologetically fun and distinctively fragrant, Torrontés is regarded as the signature white grape of Argentina. In many ways it bears a striking resemblance to Muscat (and in fact is the offspring of Muscat of Alexandria), but the primary difference is that it is almost always vinified completely dry. This results in a wine that smells sweet upon first sniff, but is decidedly not on the palate. Torrontés is grown extensively throughout Argentina and performs best in the Salta region. It is also planted to a lesser extent in neighboring Uruguay.

In the Glass

No one has ever accused Torrontés of being shy in either aroma or flavor. Notes of rose petals, geranium, stone fruit, Meyer lemon, ripe melon, and orange blossom leap out of the glass, and the palate refreshes with a healthy dose of acidity and a streak of salinity. Torrontés should be consumed in its youth to highlight its vibrancy and primary fruit flavors.

Perfect Pairings

Torrontés needs no food—it is delightful on its own as an aperitif wine. However, it can be quite a pleasant pairing with Asian or Indian cuisine, especially coconut curries. Stick to lighter fare like poultry, pork, or seafood in sauces that are flavorful but not heavy. Torrontés also makes for an ideal accompaniment to a bowl of fresh fruit.

Sommelier Secret

If you’re in search of a new summer sipper, look no further than Torrontés. These wines are always inexpensive, delightfully refreshing, and are best utilized outdoors in warm weather at a picnic, beside a pool, or on a porch.

SSR80418_2001 Item# 80418

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