2015 Beau Terre Vineyard Merlot
The Beau Terre vineyards are centerpieces for Doug Hill’s accumulated viticultural knowledge. From the row spacing to the trellising, the row direction and the clones selected, everything has been carefully thought out to give Merlot its best expression. In with bloom over by May 20, another long dry season early loomed ahead, and by July 30 most of the Merlot was at 50% veraison in Oak Knoll, and by August 4 in Carneros. By August 21, brix numbers were 21 to 22 but color remained elusive. Beau Terre reached nice color saturation by September 8, but Carneros had to wait until early October before color got out of the light plum category and into the serious purple. VQ51 yeast was used on Beau Terre and Red Fruit on the Napa Carneros lots and fermentations got going hot and fast, pressing off in about 12 days. The blend was put together in August, 2016 and it was bottled unfined and unfiltered in March 2017.