Astrale e Terra
2004 Napa Valley Atlas Peak Estate Merlot
Merlot •Astrale e Terra Estate
Napa Valley: Atlas Peak
Aged to perfection
Our previous infiltration of Astrale e Terra Winery was a massive hit with our Operatives, so much so that requests for another Astrale e Terra wine have been flooding in to our Top Secret HQ. We listened, and today we are very proud to present to you the perfectly-aged 2004 Astrale e Terra Atlas Peak Estate Merlot.
With great structure and perfect poise, this wonderful Atlas Peak Merlot was actually a very pleasant surprise. Aged with great care, this wine has us very smitten. It is also a big hit at the winery, itself, where wine club members are being given special access. Today, only, our Operatives also have this special level of access. Once our sale is over, only a select group of club members will ever see the wine again.
Made to be enjoyed with an elegant meal, today’s wine is best after 30 minutes of decanting. After it breathes for a spell, it wakes from its nearly decade-long hibernation - and really springs to life.
We love Astrale e Terra wines and today’s 2004 Atlas Peak Estate Merlot reinforces our love.
Deep and foreboding, with bold garnet hues through the core. At the edge, pretty ruby hues catch the light.
Dark cherry, leather, sweet spice and dark plum meld with braised plum, dried blueberry, subtle tobacco, spruce plank and dried leaves.
Shy at first, which is not uncommon for a perfectly aged wine like this one. As soon as the wine opens up, it delivers supple, elegant and balanced flavors of dark cherry, dusty dried Bing cherry, dusty bramble, braised plum, dark toasted tobacco leaf and a hint of dark baking spice.
Drying and supple, with dark fruit that fades to earthy flavors. These earthy flavors persist for a long time.
This wine begs to be enjoyed with food. Something with a little bit of fat would be marvelous. We’ll enjoy ours with a cocoa nib-encrusted lamb shank, flash-grilled and then slow cooked in the oven.
What the Winery Says
- Winemaker notes
- The overall crop size of the 2004 Napa Valley growing season was normal to below normal, with grapes harvested healthy and showing medium to high tannin levels, resulting in a vintage that has extended aging potential. The 2004 Estate Merlot, sourced exclusively from our hand tended vineyard in the Atlas Peak Appellation, opens with rich aromas of blackberries intertwined with cinnamon and cocoa. Echoing the vibrant nose, the palate is plush with notes of dark berries and currants, while dark chocolate, cherry cola and white pepper linger through the velvety finish.
(168 cases produced)
- 90% Merlot and 10% Cabernet Sauvignon
About the Winery
Whether we were traveling abroad or eating at our favorite local restaurant, we enjoyed experiencing a diverse array of wines and determining our own criteria for what made a wine special.
For a long time owning a winery was just a dream, until the day we found the piece of land that we knew could be the home of a very special wine. We were driving up a peaceful, winding road in a small valley in northern California, 1,250 feet above the main valley floor and sheltered by stony, majestic hills. As we gazed at the cloudless azure sky and the softly rolling hills laced with grapevines, it felt as though we were in another world. We knew this was where our dreams of winemaking were going to be made a reality.
That day, we sensed two powerful forces at work: heaven and the earth. ‘Astrale e Terra’ is Italian for ‘heaven and earth,’ and with our interest in astronomy and archaeology, the name’s inspiration seemed only natural. We look forward to sharing the fruits of our labor of love with you!
Winemaker Scott Harvey
Scott Harvey ranks among California’s most celebrated and accomplished winemakers. He first came to the attention of wine lovers and the wine trade as winemaker at Santino and Renwood where he crafted wines from some of California’s oldest vineyards and helped put the Sierra Foothills on the winemaking map. In 1996 he partnered with Richard Peterson, PhD at Folie a Deux winery in Napa Valley. There the winemaking duo garnered a reputation for outstanding Napa Valley wines produced from estate fruit as well as from vineyards across the Valley.
After selling Folie a Deux in 2004, Harvey created a series of new brands that took advantage of his experience in both the Sierra Foothills and Napa Valley. One reason Scott chose to work with Astrale e Terra is his extreme admiration for Cabernet Sauvignon grown in the Atlas Peak appellation.
As Astrale e Terra’s Consulting Winemaker, Scott is charged with overseeing harvest, winemaking procedure and the blending of the various lots that Astrale e Terra bottles from the Atlas Peak and Napa Valley, Johnson Ranch vineyards.