2009 Meritage 6L
Unlike the majority of our wines that are single-vineyard, this wine is a blend of choice lots from several of our prime estate vineyards. We hand select barrels of Cabernet from our Central Park West Vineyard in St. Helena, our Cloud’s Nest Vineyard on Mt. Veeder and our Mario’s Vineyard surrounding the winery in St. Helena; Merlot from our Vista Montone Vineyard in Southern Napa; and Petit Verdot and Cabernet Franc from our Central Park West Vineyard in St. Helena.
As a whole, 2009 was a fairly uneventful vintage, starting with very little spring frost. Late spring rains delayed irrigation needs and the warm spell in June helped curtail excessive canopy development. Usually the Napa Valley goes through several heat spikes, but in 2009 the weather was very steady through September enabling the fruit to develop gradually and evenly. However, for our red grapes in some ways it was like having two harvests. We began picking the reds, then had a period of rain and didn’t pick for nearly two weeks, then went back and finished. Extending the harvest like this led to more intense aromatics and exceptional color.
“This is my favorite wine to make because I get to choose from all our estates. Cabernet is the backbone, Merlot contributes to the mid-palate and the aromatics, Petit Verdot adds color and aromatics and Cabernet Franc elongates the finish. It starts with rich blackberry and huckleberry aromas with hints of mocha and cedar. Concentrated flavors of carmelized black cherry and black currant lead into an opulent and silky mouthfeel with a lingering finish.” - Mario Monticelli