Robert Mondavi Napa Valley Merlot

Region California, United States
Grape Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Syrah, Malbec, Petit Verdot
Style Red
Brand Robert Mondavi Winery

Vintage
Following two cooler and wetter growing seasons, the 2012 vintage was “a walk in the park”, says Vineyard Manager Matt Ashby. A dry winter led to well-timed rain in March which saturated the soils and helped fill the reservoirs. The region’s combination of warm days and cool nights endured through the growing season creating the perfect recipe for long, flavor-building hang time and optimal sugar to acid balance. We harvested our selected Napa Valley grapes for this wine between September 27th and October 17th.

Vineyards
The majority of the fruit for this wine comes from the Stag’s Leap District, a region renowned for its velvety delivery and the smooth, fleshy mouthfeel we look for in Merlot. The volcanic and other shallow soils of the region suppress vine vigor, resulting in low yields of fruit of elegance and formidable intensity. A small amount of fruit from other select Napa Valley AVAs contributed added complexity, each sub-region bringing something a little different to the blend.

Appellation: 100% Napa Valley
80% Stag’s Leap District, 14% Oak Knoll, and Napa Carneros

Winemaking
The grapes were hand harvested in the cool of the morning, then gently de-stemmed and crushed. Nearly one third of the wine was fermented in French-oak tanks in our To Kalon Cellar for soft, supple tannins and textural interest. The balance went into stainless steel tanks for purity of fruit expression. Nineteen days of maceration maximized color and flavor extraction and polished the tannins for a lush, round mouthfeel. The new wine was transferred to 60-gallon French oak barrels for malolactic fermentation and sixteen months aging to develop greater roundness and depth. Smaller amounts of complementary varieties were included in the blend, further enhancing the wine’s structure, balance and complex flavor profile.

Varietal Composition
78% Merlot
10% Cabernet Sauvignon
8% Cabernet Franc
2% Syrah
1% Malbec
1% Petit Verdot

Wine Analysis
Total acid: 6.2g/L
Final pH: 3.6
Residual sugar: 0.69 g/L
Alcohol: 15% by volume

Flavor Descriptors
Everything we love about Merlot is here: its soft, silky palate, deliciously juicy fruits and easy approachability. Our 2012 Napa Valley Merlot takes that goodness and adds wonderfully concentrated cassis, black plum, dried herb, wild violet and dusty cinnamon aromas and flavor with an intriguing savory note on the long, velvety finish

Robert Mondavi established his namesake winery in 1966 with a vision to create Napa Valley wines that would stand in the company of the world’s finest.  He chose To Kalon Vineyard in the heart of the Napa Valley as the home for Robert Mondavi Winery. This first-growth vineyard, located in Oakville, California, is renowned for producing some of the finest Cabernet Sauvignon wines in the world, as well as for its Sauvignon Blanc grapes, from which Mr. Mondavi crafted his signature wine, Fumé Blanc.

Along with To Kalon Vineyard, Robert Mondavi Winery sources grapes from some of Napa Valley’s finest vineyards, including Stag’s Leap (Cabernet Sauvignon and Sauvignon Blanc) and Carneros (Pinot Noir and Chardonnay).

Mr. Mondavi believed that wines should reflect their origins, that they are the product of the soil, the climate, and the careful stewardship of those precious resources. He also believed in combining the newest techniques and technology with time-honored winemaking traditions.

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