Pepper Bridge Merlot
Pronounced aromas of juicy, dark fruit and cocoa blend with dusty gravel and pencil shavings in this energetic vintage. The palate features opulent notes of black plum, blueberries, and spice. Polished tannins and rich fruit make for a velvety smooth mouthfeel and the finish is all about structure and power.
The summer of 2014 marked the warmest summer on record in the Walla Walla Valley. Spring was cool and dry, with bud break occurring right on time in mid-April. Once it started warming up, it didn’t stop. It was actually so warm during the month of July that the vineyard shut down and pushed our picking date by 2 weeks, putting us back in line with our average harvest date in mid-September. Despite the amount of heat units we received, meticulous work in the vineyard and precise picking dates enabled us to remain consistent with our elegant and balanced style.
91 Points, Wine Advocate:“…rich, concentrated beauty that gives up lots of ripe black fruits and chocolaty notes in its full-bodied, rounded, sexy style. Mouth-filling and nicely balanced…”
92 Points, Washington Wine Blog:“…this is a nice showing from a consistently high quality producer. Rich aromas of fresh sawdust, blackberry pie and tar are followed by rich flavors of black currants, vanilla, cocoa powder and black pepper…”
Varietal(s): 77% Merlot, 16% Cabernet Franc, 7% Malbec
Vineyard(s): 53% Seven Hills, 36% Pepper Bridge, 11% Octave
Appellation: 100% Walla Walla Valley
Oak Program: 100% French oak; 37% new, 63% neutral
Harvest Date(s): September 7 through October 7, 2014
Finished Alcohol: 14.7% by volume