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Established in 1893, Stags’ Leap Winery is one of the oldest wine estates within the acclaimed Stags Leap District, producing wines expressive of its unique terroir. With an enduring winemaking philosophy that honors traditional techniques while embracing modern capabilities, and by using the finest grapes from our own 80-acre vineyard and from quality-focused growers, Stags’ Leap wines embody a natural balance, exhibiting both intensity and finesse, while bringing forth the inherent qualities of each variety.
“Aromas of plums, ripe red cherries, wet stones and roses. Medium-to full-bodied with soft tannins. Juicy and succulent with a lovely bed of red fruit. So fresh, too. Enchanting. 94% merlot, 5% petite sirah and 1% malbec. Drink now.” - James Suckling, June 1, 2022
With freshness exhibiting its southern Napa origins, the 2019 Merlot leaps from the glass with layers of ripe black cherry, blackberry, and dark raspberry, alongside baking spice notes of cinnamon spice, vanilla, and crème brûlée. Savory, chaparral notes of lavender, bay laurel, mint and thyme accompany succulent tones of cherry kirsch and bittersweet chocolate. Hints of anise and hazelnut play on the palate, a nod to the delicately interwoven oak integration. Opulent and plush with mouthwatering acidity, polished structure, and finesse, all framed by present, mouthcoating tannins, finishing with layers and depth, showcasing the balance, elegance, and grace of this exemplary Merlot.
The 2019 harvest started one to two weeks later than previous years, mostly due to February rains, but because the vines were in their winter dormancy, it did not affect the 2019 crop. Spring continued to be wet with some rain during flowering, followed by cool temperatures that allowed the grapes to mature gradually. Most grapes ripened at lower sugars, thanks to the extended, cool growing season, and winemakers were pleased with the full flavors, fresh acidity, and superb balance of the 2019 fruit. The resulting crop showed a modest yield with a slightly more compact structure and extract than in previous years.
Our Napa Valley Merlot is crafted with grapes from vineyards in the southern part of Napa Valley. Fruit from Oak Knoll makes up most of the blend, with the remaining fruit is sourced from the Oakville appellation as well as our very own Stags Leap District. Merlot can lose its varietal identity when exposed to too much heat, but the fruit from these select southerly vineyards exhibit varietal expressions of fresh fruit character, structure, and bright acidity.
The grapes for this Napa Valley Merlot underwent a 2-3 week maceration period designed to extract ideal flavor, color and tannin from the skins. Using traditional winemaking techniques, Winemaker Christophe Paubert aged this Merlot in high quality French oak barrels (32% new) for 19 months. The new oak imparts structure, ageability, and a slight spice complexity that still allows the fresh fruit flavors to take center stage.
For Christophe Paubert, Winemaker and General Manager at Stags’ Leap Winery, the identity of a wine is found through the terroir. Christophe’s career has spanned the industry from sales to winemaking, and his impressive background includes positions at Chateau d’Yquem and Gruaud-Larose as well as projects in Chile, Spain and Washington State. But it was the terroir of Stags’ Leap that drew him to California.
|Oak Treatment||100% French oak (32% new) for 19 months|
|Blend||94% Merlot, 5% Petite Sirah and 1% Malbec|
To create a better experience for you across all of our brands, we’ll check this info with accounts across the Treasury Wine Estates Portfolio of brands: Beringer, Beaulieu Vineyard, Etude, Hewitt Vineyard, Stags' Leap, Sterling, Penfolds, and The Wine Shop.
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