2008 Pride Mountain Napa-Sonoma Counties Merlot

SKU #1095095 93 points Wine Enthusiast

 It may sound strange, but this wine tastes like the liquid equivalent of a buttered toast bacon sandwich, spread with a little blackberry jam. However it sounds, it’s really delicious.  (8/2011)

90 points Connoisseurs Guide

 As this deeply drawn wine demonstrates so well, Pride Merlots are as unruly as they are rich when still in their infancy, but even with all of its blustery ripeness, its puckery young tannins and its palpable trailing heat, its enduring message is one of convincing depth and fruity confidence. Aging is a must, and more rather than less is recommended, so our endorsement comes with the caveat that it be stashed away in the back of the cellar and left to rest for a half-decade or more.  (11/2011)

90 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 The 2008 Merlot (72% Sonoma fruit and 28% Napa) reveals abundant aromas of black cherry and mocha-infused fruit intermixed with hints of white chocolate, roasted herbs and coffee. It is a sexy, full-throttle, heady Merlot to drink over the next 7-8 years. (RP)  (12/2010)

90 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Ruby-red. High-toned aromas of plum, redcurrant and cedar lifted by a floral topnote. Spicy and firmly built but also with a rather voluptuous mid-palate texture and lovely sweetness to its plum and licorice flavors. Finishes with firm tannins and very good length. I like the note of spicy Cabernet on the back end. (ST)  (6/2011)

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Price: $49.99
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- A very popular red grape variety found in the great wines of St. Emilion and Pomerol. It is the most planted variety in Bordeaux, and it has also become an extremely fashionable red in many regions including California. Although it has a reputation to be smooth, and easy to drink when young, Merlot is also capable of producing extremely intense wines as well. It is often used as a blending agent with Cabernet Sauvignon.

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.


- 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.
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).