2016 Madson Wines Santa Cruz Mountains Merlot

SKU #1407684

Winemaker's Notes: "This Santa Cruz Mountain Red Blend comes from a single vineyard in Los Altos Hills. This vineyard lies at 800 ft elevation overlooking the Santa Clara Valley. Planted in 1981, the vineyard is steep and rustic with Franciscan Complex soils of basalt and schist. Warm days and cool nights help lengthen the ripening time and maintain fresh acidity. Once harvested, the Merlot (75%) was destemmed while the Cabernet Franc (25%) was left as intact, whole clusters. This is to promote bright fruit flavors and varietal complexity. The grapes fermented spontaneously on native yeast strains. Once the wine is completely dry, we gently pressed to neutral, french oak barrels. The wine stayed on fine lees for 11 months of élevage with one racking prior to bottling. 3 barrels, 75 cases produced. The Merlot gives the wine a smoothness while the Cabernet Franc gives it an herbaceous and earthy quality. The Merlot contributes vibrant red fruits including flavors of plum and red apple. There is a smoothness and richness to this red wine while showing grace and poise. This is truly a complex wine with many subtle nuances."

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Price: $24.95

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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:

Santa Cruz Mountains

- Vineyards dot the valleys and ridges of this coastal AVA just south of San Francisco. Microclimates make it difficult to generalize, and vineyards are frequently separated by acres of forests and meadowlands (not to mention entire towns!), but this is nonetheless known as a cooler-climate zone ideal for pinot noir. Ridge is doubtless the most famous local producer, with its cabernet blend, Monte Bello, named after a Santa Cruz mountain peak. High-quality, low-production chardonnay and some Rhône varietals prosper as well.
Alcohol Content (%): 13.5