Sunday, January 29, 2012

Cupcake Vineyards Central Coast Merlot 2009

Sourced from vineyards in the Central Coast region, Cupcake Vineyards brings this California Merlot to the table for a mere $10 price tag but it's definitely worth way more. Good body weight and texture express aromas full of gusto, blueberries and red cherries, while on the palate smooth cassis and smoky flavors influenced by the oak and hints of coffee and dark chocolate. Supple tannins but smooth and attractive with a matching finish. Really like this as an every day Merlot.

The grapes were cool fermented with a serious regimen of pump-overs in the early stages of fermentation to extract the soft tannins and color during the aqueous phase. The grape skins were then pressed before the fermentation reached dryness to maintain the wines lush tannin structure. The must was kept cool during fermentation to help create a slower fermentation and allow the wine to retain more aromatic properties as well as complexity of flavor and body. The wine was aged in premium American oak barrels — adding richness and complexity.

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