2013 Pahlmeyer Merlot

Black amethyst in color, this wine opens with sultry aromas of boysenberry, violet and vanilla. Velvety and plush upon entry with intense flavors of black cherry and dark chocolate, it is lifted with fresh acidity and savory notes of grilled rosemary into an everlasting finish. Extraordinary in its depth, complexity and concentration, this wine requires time, patience and decanting. Best after 2019, it will reveal increasing opulence well beyond fifteen years of cellaring.

Composition

95% Merlot
1% Petit Verdot
4% Cabernet Sauvignon

Vineyards

Critics

96 Points

Robert Parker, The Wine Advocate, December 2016

An absolute epic wine is the 2013 Merlot. It is no wimpy wine either. A gorgeous nose including roasted espresso, melted black chocolate, blackberry, plum and cassis offers an exceptional set of aromatics. The wine has beautiful ripeness, headiness and a long finish of close to 45+ seconds. This is a beauty of terrific purity, texture and personality. Few California Merlots will ever be capable of equaling this. Drink it over the next 25-30+ years.

93 Points

Antonio Galloni, Vinous, October 2015

The 2013 Merlot is dark, powerful and also quite tannic, all signatures of the vintage. Black cherry, mocha, graphite, plum, smoke, licorice and menthol are bold and intense in the glass, but the 2013 is only showing a hint of its potential. Far from an easygoing Merlot, Pahlmeyer's 2013 is going to need time to be fully expressive.

92 Points

Tim Fish, March 2016

Plump and silky, with a luxurious texture and a lingering finish framed by rich flavors of black cherry, mocha, dusty herb and spicy oak. Tannins ease in on the finish. Drink now through 2024.

Winemaking

Winemaker:
Kale Anderson
Alcohol:
15.2%
Harvested:
September 13 to October 12, 2013
Bottled:
May 6, 2015
Released:
October 15, 2015

Grape clusters were gravity-fed onto a vibrating table with two screens to sift out materials other than grapes while we removed by hand any fruit that did not pass visual inspection. After gentle destemming, individual berries were then run through another hand-sorting pass to ensure only clean fruit was delivered into the fermenters. After five days of cold maceration, the fruit entered primary fermentation for two to six weeks, then gently basket pressed. 15% of the wine was fermented in French oak 500L puncheons, and the remaining in new Seguin Moreau Icone and Taransaud French Oak barrels and aged for 20 months.

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