2009 Shafer Napa Valley Merlot
*Insider* Supple, elegant and beautifully focused, with aromas of red currant and toasty vanilla that lead to ripe but sleek and layered flavors of black cherry, cinnamon and black tea. Tannins sneak in on the finish. Drink now through 2017.
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
The 2009 Merlot is an attractive, fleshy wine graced with expressive dark red fruit, flowers, sweet spices and licorice. The wine reveals gorgeous radiance and a supple, inviting personality ideally suited to drinking over the next few years. Anticipated maturity: 2012-2015.
Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar
Medium red. Aromas of redcurrant, tobacco leaf, fresh herbs and chocolatey oak. Not a particularly fat or sweet style of merlot but sappy and lively, with oak spices perking up the intense currant and herb flavors. Not quite as creamy as the other two current red releases from this winery but very nicely balanced and persistent, finishing with fine-grained tannins and late notes of licorice and herbs.