2016 Black Sage Vineyard Merlot
On the nose there are notes of ripe plums, blackberries, vanilla, cloves, and some sweet smoke. The palate has similar flavours of rich ripe fruit and spices with pleasant smoky vanilla notes. The tannins are soft and the finish is long with the flavours lingering long after the last sip.
The 2016 season began with above average temperatures causing an early bud break. This early harvest was tempered with cooler temperatures and rain in June and July. In the fall, there were warm days but the nights started to cool which helped balance the acid. Harvest started early to mid-October and the lack of damaging frost allowed the grapes to develop bold flavours and the tannins to ripen. Thus the 2016 reds are full of fruit flavour, with mouth coating tannins and great structure.
The fruit came in ripe and was destemmed and crushed into stainless steel tanks. It was fermented for 15 days and was pumped over twice daily during the fermentation to extract more colour and flavour. The wine went through malolactic fermentation and was aged for 15 months in specially selected blend of French and American oak barrels.
Food Pairing Notes
Pair with pot roast, meatloaf, venison steaks, other braised meats and firm cheeses.