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Flat front label of wine
Flat front label of wine

Merus Cabernet Sauvignon (1.5 Liter Magnum) 2008

Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa Valley, California
  • WS93
  • RP93
15.3% ABV
  • RP93
  • JS92
  • WE94
  • WS91
  • JS90
  • RP95
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  • WE94
  • WS93
  • RP92
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  • WS92
  • RP92
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  • CG91
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  • RP95
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  • RP93
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15.3% ABV

Winemaker Notes

2008 represents our eleventh vintage of Merus. The 2008 Merus is opulent, juicy and approachable with subtle tannins lurking below the surface. The aromas are emblematic of Coombsville ripe blueberries, blackberries, anise cedar, cassis and wet granite. The lush, thick palate is backed by balancing acids that impact structure and elegance to the wine. While drinking beautifully now, the 2008 Merus has the depth and concentration to expand and evolve over the next five to ten years.

Blend: 99% Cabernet Sauvignon, and 1% Malbec and Petit Verdot

Critical Acclaim

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WS 93
Wine Spectator
Bold, rich and smoky, a big, expressive wine that's elegant and graceful, with mixed dark fruits, roasted herb, black licorice and mineral. Ends with a long, layered finish that highlights the berry and mineral. Drink now through 2022.
RP 93
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
Patience, patience, and more patience is mandated by the 2008. A blend of 99% Cabernet Sauvignon, .5% Malbec and .5% Petit Verdot reveals an opaque blue/purple color in addition to abundant graphite, vanillin, blueberry and blackberry aromas. Built for the long haul, it is a concentrated, dense, promising Cabernet along the lines of the great wines made at Merus since its founding by Mark Herold (who is now pursuing other projects). Give it 4-5 years of cellaring and drink it over the following 25-30 years.
Raging 93+
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Merus
Merus, Napa Valley, California
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Merus is a small, ultra luxury wine brand in the Napa Valley that creates highly-coveted wine in small quantities. Hand-made, using the finest techniques and processes, this wine has been rated as one of the country's top Cabernet Sauvignons.

Merus was started in 1998 with the mission of producing handcrafted wine of uncompromising quality and distinction. Their objective is to produce small amounts of age-worthy Cabernet Sauvignon from St. Helena, Stags Leap, and Coombsville vineyards. Merus views winemaking in a conservationist light, whereby optimizing vineyard quality is the single most important factor in achieving superlative wine quality. Therefore, they have established long-term relationships with only those winegrowers willing to work within the parameters of their rigorous vineyard demands. Merus is a labor of love that truly expresses the definition of great wine in the bottle.

Napa Valley

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One of the world's most highly regarded regions for wine production and tourism, the Napa Valley is the AVA that brought worldwide recognition to California winemaking. The area was settled by a few choice wine families in the 1960's who bet that the wines of the area would grow and flourish. They were right. The Napa wine industry really took off in the 1980's, when vineyard lands were scooped up and vines were planted throughout the county. A number of wineries emerged, from large conglomerates to small boutiques to cult classics. Cabernet Sauvignon is definitely the grape of choice here, with many winemakers also focusing on Bordeaux blends. Whites are usually Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc.

Within the Napa Valley lie many smaller sub-AVAs that lend even more character specifics to the wines. Furthest south is Carneros, followed by Yountville, Oakville & Rutherford. Above those two are St.-Helena and the valley's newest AVA, Calistoga. These areas are situated on the valley floor and are known for creating rich, smooth Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Chardonnay. There are a few mountain regions as well, nestled on the slopes overlooking the valley AVAs. Those include Howell Mountain, Stags Leap District, and Mt. Veeder. Wines from the mountain regions are often more structured and firm, benefiting from more time in the bottle to evolve and soften.

Cabernet Sauvignon

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A noble variety bestowed with both power and concentration, Cabernet Sauvignon is sometimes referred to as the “king” of red grapes. It can be somewhat unapproachable early in its youth but has the potential to age beautifully, with the ability to last fifty years or more at its best. Small berries and tough skins provide its trademark firm tannic grip, while high acidity helps to keep the wine fresh for decades. Cabernet Sauvignon flourishes in temperate climates like Bordeaux's Medoc region (and in St-Emillion and Pomerol, where it plays a supporting role to Merlot). The top Médoc producers use Cabernet Sauvignon for their wine’s backbone, blending it with Merlot and smaller amounts of Cabernet Franc, Malbec, and/or Petit Verdot. On its own, Cabernet Sauvignon has enjoyed great success throughout the world, particularly in the Napa Valley, and is responsible for some of the world’s most prestigious and sought-after “cult” wines.

In the Glass

High in color, tannin, and extract, Cabernet Sauvignon expresses notes of blackberry, cassis, plum, currant, spice, and tobacco. In Bordeaux and elsewhere in the Old World you'll find the more earthy, tannic side of Cabernet, where it's typically blended to soften tannins and add complexity. In warmer regions like California and Australia, you can typically expect more ripe fruit flavors upfront.

Perfect Pairings

Cabernet Sauvignon is right at home with rich, intense meat dishes—beef, lamb, and venison, in particular—where its opulent fruit and decisive tannins make an equal match to the dense protein of the meat. With a mature Cabernet, opt for tender, slow-cooked meat dishes.

Sommelier Secrets

Despite the modern importance and ubiquity of Cabernet Sauvignon, it is actually a relatively young variety. In 1997, DNA revealed the grape to be a spontaneous crossing of Cabernet Franc and Sauvignon Blanc which took place in 17th century southwestern France.

YNG290660_2008 Item# 120939