2012 Melka "La Mekerra Vineyard" Knights Valley Bordeaux Blend

SKU #1273323 98 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 The other two wines from Knights Valley that I tasted include a virtually perfect 2012 Proprietary Red La Mekera made from 52% Cabernet Franc and 49% Merlot. This is Philippe Melka’s Northern California version of Cheval Blanc and he has pulled it off brilliantly. A real look-alike for that great estate in St.-Emilion, this wine has beautiful mulberry, black cherry and blackcurrant fruit mixed with licorice, forest floor and incense. Terrific in texture, opulent, full-bodied mouthfeel, stunning purity, yet a freshness and liveliness that is just remarkable. Sadly, there are only 349 cases of this wine that spent 20 months in French oak, of which 60% was new. (RP)  (10/2014)

94 points Vinous

 Iron, smoke, graphite, red plums and savory herbs emerge from the 2012 Mekerra. A classic Knights Valley wine, the Mekerra boasts a stunning interplay of vibrant fruit and the more complex savory/mineral notes that are typical of the appellation. Mocha, gravel, espresso, game and tobacco are some of the notes that punctuate the tightly-wound finish. Far from an easygoing 2012, the Mekerra is going to need a few years in bottle to unwind. This is a fabulous showing. The blend is 52% Cabernet Franc and 48% Merlot. (AG)  (1/2015)

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Varietal:

Cabernet Sauvignon and Blends

- Cabernet Sauvignon has come a long way from its role as a blending varietal, however dominant, in the wines of Bordeaux. Today it is the most planted red varietal in the world. Identified as a descendent of Cabernet Franc and Sauvignon Blanc, the late-ripening Cabernet Sauvignon needs to be planted in warmer climates to fully ripen. Its small berries can easily be identified for their distinctive blue color, thick skins and high tannins. And while the varietal has its own definitive characteristics: green pepper-like aromas and black currant flavors among them, it is perhaps most prized for its ability to convey terroir, vintage and winemaking. A relatively new varietal, Cabernet Sauvignon started making inroads into the wines of the Médoc and Graves in the late-18th century. Today it is also dominant in the up-and-coming Entre-Deux-Mers region of Bordeaux and can also be found in Southwest France. It is the companion varietal to Sangiovese in Italy's Super Tuscans and is planted all over Europe, stretching to lesser-known winegrowing regions like Russia and Lebanon. In the Americas Cabernet Sauvignon has found champions in every nook and cranny of California and among winemakers in Washington, where it complements plantings of Merlot. In South America, Cab thrives in Chile, but can also be found in smaller amounts in Argentina and even in Mexico.
Country:

United States

- When people consider domestic wine, they normally think about the state of California. The fine viticultural Region within California, including the Napa Valley, Sonoma, Santa Cruz Mountains, Mendocino and Santa Barbara, are capable of growing grapes of world-class quality. But there's plenty of fabulous wine coming from other states, too. Oregon, Washington and New York are also causing eyebrows (and glassware) to be raised around the world. Click for a list of bestselling items from the United States.
Sub-Region:

California

- With the explosive growth that California's wine industry has seen the past several years, it's easy to view winemaking and grape growing in the Golden State as a recent phenomenon. And while it's true that California's viticultural history is brief compared to several European countries, this state's roots date back well over 200 years. Due to the enormous response to California wine within the United States and worldwide, there are thousands of excellent and diverse wines being produced within the state each year. For our entire selection of California wines, please visit this link.
Specific Appellation:

Sonoma County

- Second in fame only to Napa, this "other" valley offers just about every climate and topography imaginable. From its cool and fog-enshrouded coastal regions on the far west, to the sprawling Alexander Valley on the boarder of Napa and the many little dips and peaks in between, Sonoma has been a vital wine-grape-growing region since the mid 1800s. Important sub-AVAs include Chalk Hill (known for chardonnay and sauvignon blanc), Dry Creek Valley (where zin is king) Knights Valley (largely cabernet land), Russian River Valley and Sonoma Coast (both celebrated pinot and chardonnay zones).