TwoTone Farm Merlot 2001
The Merlot grapes were grown in vineyards on the Napa Valley's floor, mid-valley, close to where the river used to flood, so the soils are generally loamy, which works great for this variety because they're heavy and a bit more fertile. The lots were all vinified separately and aged in French oak barrels for about 16 months to help the tannins soften and highlight the fruit with some nice vanilla and brown spice characters.
TwoTone Farm is a painting by Santa Fe artist Patrick McFarlin. Depicted on the label, the painting, like the wines, evokes a mood of farm-style down-to-earth straightforwardness and unpretentious fun.
"Ripe, with plush texture to chocolate, black cherry and roasted plum flavors. Mocha and vanilla from toasty oak fold into round, supple tannins on the finish."
TwoTone Farm is the first screw cap only line to be introduced by a major Napa Valley wine company. The line is a collaboration between two assistant winemakers at Beringer, they wanted to make the kind of wines that they could drink everyday. Many winemakers now agree that screw caps are better than corks at preserving a wine’s freshness, but the jury is still out on whether screw caps are appropriate for wines destined for prolonged aging. We believe that screw caps have a pretty viable future, and there is more and more trade and consumer acceptance of closure. But each winery should decide for itself which closure to use. We believe there’s room for all closures—cork and its alternatives.
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.