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TATE Spring Street Merlot 2013

    750ML / 14.2% ABV
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    750ML / 14.2% ABV

    Winemaker Notes

    The 2013 Merlot is deeper in color this year with a deep purple core and rim. The aromatics are lively and jump from the glass with big plum, cinnamon and anise as well as underlying aromatics of cedar and gravel. The palate is very plush and round, where darker fruits of black raspberry and pomegranate emerge. The tannins are bigger than the 2012 vintage, but still round and in balance for a Merlot, and the wine has great acidity to match the tannins. The 2013 Merlot is a great example of a wine that is lifted and food friendly in its youth, but would definitely benefit from some age. This wine would be at a great peek in 9-10 years (2024-2025).

    Critical Acclaim

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    TATE

    TATE

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    TATE, California
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    David Tate, a native of British Columbia, Canada, is the Proprietor and Winemaker of TATE. For nearly 20 years, he has worked all over the world in many facets of premium wine production. As well as hand-crafting TATE wines, David is the winemaker and manager for one of the most renowned boutique wineries in the Napa Valley, Barnett Vineyards, where he has produced multiple vintages of critically acclaimed wines.

    Prior to his work with Barnett, David was the assistant winemaker at Ridge Vineyards for five years atop Montebello in the Santa Cruz Mountains; his years with Ridge laid the groundwork for David's commitment to quality and understanding of what it takes to produce premium, world-class wine with a sense of place. In addition, David has worked in the Barossa Valley, Australia; Provence, France; Canterbury, New Zealand and has traveled to every fine wine region in the world. David graduated from Brock University in 2002, with an Honors Degree in Enology and Viticulture. David's research work has been published and he is an advocate for wine education, helping to teach portions of the Wine and Spirits Education trust in his free time.

    TATE produces small-lot wines from micro-vineyards dotted along the valley floor and hillsides of the Napa Valley.

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    St. Helena

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    St. Helena is in the heart of the Napa Valley, nestled between Calistoga to the north and Rutherford on its southern border. On its western side, the Mayacamas Mountains guard it from the cooling effects of the Pacific Ocean; to its east stand the Vaca Mountains. In conjunction, these mountain ranges serve to lock in summer daytime heat. But in the evening, cool air from the San Pablo Bay funnels up through the valley, creating very chilly nights. It isn’t uncommon for temperatures to drop 50 degrees, a shift that promotes a balance of sugar ripeness and acidity in wine grapes.

    St. Helena contains a plethora of different soil types in a small area, which have been enhanced over centuries by rain runoff from both mountain ranges. Its vineyards cover a variety of terrain, spreading across the bucolic valley floor and its benchlands.

    These ideal topographic and climatic growing conditions easily caught the attention of early winemaking pioneers. In fact, St. Helena is the birthplace of Napa Valley’s commercial wine industry. Dr. Crane founded his cellar in 1859, David Fulton in 1860 and Charles Krug in 1861.

    Today there are no less than 400 separate vineyards planted within the 12,000 acres that make up the St. Helena appellation.

    Revered most for its red wines based on Bordeaux varieties, namely Cabernet Sauvignon, the St. Helena appellation is also a source of superior Syrah, Zinfandel and Sauvignon blanc.

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    Merlot

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    An easy-going red variety with generous fruit and a supple texture, Merlot can be made into a range of styles from everyday-drinking to world-renowned and age-worthy. Merlot is the dominant variety in the best wines from Bordeaux’s Right Bank regions of St. Emilion and Pomerol where it is blended with Cabernet Franc. On the Left Bank in the Medoc, it plays a supporting role to Cabernet Sauvignon—in both cases resulting in some of the longest-lived and highest-quality wines in the world. Merlot also frequently shines on its own, particularly from California’s Napa Valley.

    In the Glass

    Merlot is known for its soft, silky texture and approachable flavors of ripe plum, red and black cherry and raspberry. In a cool climate, you may find earthier notes alongside dried herbs, tobacco and tar, while Merlot from warmer regions is generally more straightforward and fruit-focused.

    Perfect Pairings

    Lamb with Merlot is an ideal match—the sweetness of the meat picks up on the sweet fruit flavors of the wine to create a harmonious balance. Merlot’s gentle tannins allow for a hint of spice and its medium weight and bright acidity permit the possibilities of simple pizza or pasta with red sauce—overall, an extremely versatile food wine.

    Sommelier Secret

    Since the release of the 2004 film Sideways, Merlot's repuation has taken a big hit, and more than a decade later has yet to fully recover, though it is on its way. What many viewers didn't realize was that as much as Miles derided the variety, the prized wine of his collection—a 1961 Château Cheval Blanc—is made from a blend of Merlot with Cabernet Franc.

    WWH141323_2013 Item# 161556