2006 Pride Mountain Napa-Sonoma Counties Merlot
Made in the Pride style, this is a big, powerful wine that should age well. It’s enormously ripe, with flamboyant cassis, cherry pie filling, milk chocolate, licorice and smoky oak flavors that are wrapped into thoroughly modern, softly refined tannins.
*Two Stars* Wispy suggestions of loam and briar are almost obscured by chocolate and cherries in the highly ripe aromas of this one, but, the wine judiciously takes a step back in the mouth from excess and eschews simple ripeness in favor of sweet oak and deep, fully extracted fruit. Its pushy tannins do get in the way of early enjoyment, but it is certain to smooth and expand over half decade and more.
Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar
Bright red-ruby. Aromas of blackberry, plum, licorice and chocolate, plus a very ripe note of strawberry jam. Sweet and smooth on the palate, showing a fuller middle and more even ripeness than the Cabernet Franc. Raspberry and chocolate flavors are complemented by a hint of dried herbs, but here there's less of the minty character of the Cabernet Franc. Finishes with fairly substantial dusty tannins. (ST)
Dense and rich, displaying currant, licorice and spice aromas, with concentrated plum, espresso and loamy flavors that finish with firm, minerally tannins. (TF)
The cult following for Pride Mountain has been in full force for years now. Situated high up at the top of Spring Mountain, the winery straddles the Sonoma/Napa county line and commands a spectacular view of Mount St Helena. The property was a winery well over 100 years ago, and now produces some of the more sought after wines in California. The reviewers tend to agree with the collectors, as the wines regularly achieve fantastic scores in numerous respected publications.