Hourglass Blueline Vineyard Merlot 2018
Lush and vivid, the 2018 Blueline Estate Merlot opens with pronounced aromas of tangy dark cherry, raspberry compote and warm chestnut, with telltale notes of mandarin orange peel and Asian five spice providing precision and lift. Across the palate, the vibrant red fruit shines, accented by warm blackberry pie filling, roasted nut and hoisin notes. While supple and gracious in texture, Blueline’s mineral-rich soils add defined firmness to its structure and noticeable lift on the finish. The subtle nuances of aromatics, flavor and texture give Blueline Merlot a uniquely wide breadth of food pairing options from Mediterranean to Asian fare.
Critical AcclaimAll Vintages
A rock star of a Merlot, the 2018 Merlot Blueline Estate boasts a deep purple color as well as a sexy, up-front bouquet of blueberries, ripe cherries, spring flowers, candied violets, and cedary spice. With medium to full-bodied richness, a lively, elegant texture, and seamless tannins, it's going to put a smile on your face any time over the coming 10-15 years. It reminds me of a top notch Pomerol from the likes of Marielle Cazaux.
The 2018 Merlot Blueline Estate is composed of 86% Merlot, 7% Cabernet Sauvignon, 6% Malbec and 1% Petit Verdot. Deep garnet-purple in color, it rolls effortlessly out of the glass with compelling scents of baked black and red plums, mulberries and juicy blackberries with hints of licorice, allspice and bay leaves. The soft, spicy, medium to full-bodied palate is chock-full of lively black and blue fruits, delivering loads of savory and earthy nuances on the finish.
The 2018 Merlot Blueline Estate is fabulous. Rich and plummy, the Merlot has so much character. Savory top notes from the Cabernet Sauvignon in the blend adds striking nuance and savory complexity. Mid-weight structure suggests near-term drinking is best, but this is far from an easygoing wine. I loved it. Drinking window: 2020 - 2030
Dark berry with chocolate, walnut and some peanut on the nose. Full-bodied with round, chewy texture and a flavorful finish. Lots of fruit here that’s slightly dried in character, with prunes and berries. Richer style of merlot. Drink or hold.
With the christening of the winery at Blueline and its distinct single-varietal wines, Hourglass has entered an exciting new phase of its evolution. A brand synonymous with terroir-driven, modern Napa wines of the highest caliber, its goal is and will always remain the same: To capture the essence of two of Napa Valley's most expressive vineyard sites in bottled form, and to have the honor of sharing them with you and your families for decades to come.
Undoubtedly proving its merit over and over, Napa Valley is a now a leading force in the world of prestigious red wine regions. Though Cabernet Sauvignon dominates Napa Valley, other red varieties certainly thrive here. Important but often overlooked include Merlot and other Bordeaux varieties well-regarded on their own as well as for their blending capacities. Very old vine Zinfandel represents an important historical stronghold for the region and Pinot noir is produced in the cooler southern parts, close to the San Pablo Bay.
Perfectly situated running north to south, the valley acts as a corridor, pulling cool, moist air up from the San Pablo Bay in the evenings during the hot days of the growing season, which leads to even and slow grape ripening. Furthermore the valley claims over 100 soil variations including layers of volcanic, gravel, sand and silt—a combination excellent for world-class red wine production.