2011 SPELLBOUND Merlot, CALIFORNIA
Vineyard & Harvest Notes
At Harvest we look for lush, plump berries as they lend themselves to creating soft, friendly tannins and opulent, balanced berry flavors in our Merlot. The larger berries tend to have more approachable rounded flavors which are a key stylistic signature of Spellbound. We look for the grape's maximum maturity by sampling and tasting grapes in the field. Technical information is not enough; we must taste to determine the magic moment of harvest. For Spellbound optimal ripeness means that the grapes are bursting with flavor yet they still retain crispness. Timing the harvest is key, as perfect ripeness provides richness of black fruits and beautiful balance in the wine.
Our Merlot is approachable, yet deeply rich with berry and oak flavor, providing satisfaction with every glass. The Spellbound Merlot was created to demonstrate the dark yet playful fruit profile of Merlot with its soft fruits and aromatics of mulling spice, fresh cedar cigar box and decadent leather. You will find bright fruit mingling with a classic signature of toasted Madagascar vanilla bean and French oak. Our dark, juicy, plush wine style continues here with soft tannins that gently caress while the brambly fruit and oak character manifest in every glass.
"The balance of fruit and oak in wine is essential. Oak lends lovely components similar to the caramelized sugar atop a créme brúlée or the nuances of decadent flan. It is our desire to find a balance between the oak and brambly fruits of the Spellbound Merlot. Our goal, by starting with perfectly ripe fruit is to create a wine that provides harmony between the oak and fruit flavors. Short fermentation times allow for maximum color and extraction while softening the influence and creating mouth watering tannins. These winemaking techniques guarantee that the Spellbound Merlot will be juicy, ripe, and not too overpoweringso you can enjoy a glass everyday!"
Rob Mondavi Jr., 4th Generation Napa Valley Winemaker
Varietal Blend: 76% Merlot, 11% Cabernet Sauvignon, 13% other proprietary red wines
Viticultural Area: Lodi, California
Fermentation: Stainless Steel
Aging: French & American Oak (20% New)
Titratable Acid: 5 g/L