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Jekel Vineyards Merlot 2003

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Credit: Jekel Vineyards.

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    Harvest Notes
    On again, off again rounds of early storms and mini heatwaves during late winter and spring on the Central Coast posed challenges for growers and resulted in lighter crop loads at harvest time. That allowed for deeper concentration of flavor in the remaining grapes, however, and in the end, the harvest resembled the legendary harvest of 1994, where concentrated flavors and extended hang time allowing for full maturity provided winemakers with exceptional fruit.

    Grapes for the 2003 vintage come exclusively from the Sanctuary Vineyard in the cool Arroyo Seco district of Monterey, where deep gravelly soils and ample water allow for well-drained vines producing exceptional fruit in every harvest. The blend of key Bordeaux varietals takes advantage of the unique personality of each grape, providing a rich and layered wine with complexity and unexpected rich flavors. In this vintage, Cabernet Sauvignon has increased in the blend to bring greater fullness to the wine.

    After an extended maceration to extract brilliant color (and to soften tannins), the wine receives a minimal amount of yeast to balance the natural yeasts leading to fermentation in small stainless tanks. 100% of the wine undergoes secondary malolactic fermentation to encourage a wonderful, full mouthfeel. The wine was racked into small French oak barrels, principally from coopers Francoise Freres and Vicard, with just 15% of the wine in new oak and the remainder in mostly neutral barrels aged two years or longer.

    Tasting Notes
    Aromas of hazelnut, laurel and ripe black plums give way in the mouth to flavors of plum, blackberry and a hint of oak spice. The wine is medium to heavy in body, with substantial tannins that will allow for further aging and added complexity over time. This is a substantial wine that will pair well with roasted meats.

    Posted by thewinery on December 1st, 2007 at 4:17pm | report comment

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