Wine Spies' 15 Year Anniversary

Bolen Family Estates 2007 Estate Merlot

Bolen Family Estates 2007 Estate Merlot

What We Say 2007 Estate Merlot


Today’s wine is so superb that we issued this special alert. Our day to day focus is on quality first, but when we find a really extraordinary wine, we issue these special alerts.


Subscribe to our Daily Dispatch (above) and you’ll always know what our Top Secret coupon code of the day is. Every day we issue a new members-only code that entitles you to have Ground Shipping included on orders of six or more and, sometimes, an added discount!

Mission Codename: The Legacy

Operative: Agent Red

Objective: Infiltrate Bolen Family Estates, a Napa Valley gem that produces only Merlot. secure their elegant Beckstoffer-grown Merlot for our exacting Operatives.

Mission Status: Accomplished!

Current Winery: Bolen Family Estates

Wine Subject: 2007 Merlot, Napa Valley

Winemaker: Tom Rinaldi

Backgrounder: The fine fruit for today’s superb Merlot comes from the Beckstoffer Orchard Avenue Vineyard, in the Oak Knoll District of Napa Valley AVA. The vineyard was purchased in 1997 and planted exclusively to Merlot. Only a select few wineries are able to secure fruit from this vineyard, and we have it on good authority that Eric Bolen was able to get his hands of the finest rows.

Bolen Family Winery produces only Merlot – and they do it extremely well. With only 250 cases produced, their current vintage is a limited-availability wine that is difficult to purchase in quantities of more than a few bottles. Today only, we are pleased to have gotten our hands on an ample, but still somewhat limited, allocation – with no maximum bottle limits!

To true wine lovers, Merlot is one of the finest wine varietals in the world. Today, Merlot continues to sell in record numbers across the US, outpacing most other varietals. Merlot is sincere, food-fabulous wine for serious wine drinkers. If you think that Merlot is not for you, forget everything that you think you know about Merlot and embrace this stellar example.

Wine Spies Tasting Profile:

Look – Dark ruby, dense with a darker core. The wine is clear and dark at its heart. Concentrated color is maintained out to a medium-width band of cherry red at the edge of the glass. When swirled, chubby, wine-stained tears glide slowly down the glass.

Smell – Deep and lush, with ripe fruit and earthen spice that leap from the glass. This is a wine that you can smell long before you lift it to your nose. Blackberry, earthy black cherry, red currant, violets and plum are layered atop soft brown spice, softly toasted oak, soft cedar and a hint of subtle white mushroom.

Feel – Soft and slightly round on the attack, the wine quickly coats the entire palate. Fine tannins and a bright acidity support the delicious fruits long into a lingering finish.

Taste – Ripe and flavorful, this wine delivers a rush of concentrated black cherry juice, overripe blackberry, stewed black plum ad soft spice. As the wine settles on the palate, it reveals flavors of smoky red cherry, black tea, cigar box, leather and a hint of burnt sugar.

Finish – Long and very flavorful, with black fruit giving way to red fruit, spice, tea, and soft sweet wood. As flavors dwindle, the palate dries and the lips pucker, reminding you to take another elegant sip.

Conclusion – Elegant, deep and filled with flavor, this 2007 Bolen Family Estates Merlot is an aromatic delight. This wine reveals the magical pairing that can someties occur when great fruit meets a world-class winemaker. In the case of today’s wine, magic was indeed made. And, speaking of pairing, this Merlot has plenty of structure, but it is also very food friendly. With its bright acidity, this wine is very food-friendly. Our tasting panel paired ours with fresh tortellini with a homemade marinara sauce and spicy Italian sausages. Between bites, each sip of the wine provided a refreshing cleanse of the palate, with the delicious fruit holding its own against the spicy flavors of the meal. Enjoy this wine now, but be sure to cellar a few bottles for the next 5 to 7 years.

Mission Report:

With bottling underway, we were unable to secure an interview with Bolen’s winemaker. Be sure to subscribe to our Daily Dispatch, above, so that we can keep you informed of our next Bolen sale.

Wine Spies Vineyard Check:

The location of the Beckstoffer Orchard Avenue Vineyard can be seen in this satellite photo.

Read Full Review
Hide Full Review

What the Winery Says Bolen Family Estates

Bolen Family Estates
Bolen Family Estates

About This Wine:

We do Merlot and we do it well. Our 2nd release is our 2007 Merlot from the Oak Knoll District of Napa Valley. This 100% Merlot takes things to a new level for us. The wine highlights bursting black and dark fruits paired with beautiful silky tanins that carry the wine to a lingering exquisite finish. We feel we may have outdone ourselves on this one. Check it out for yourself.

About The Winery:

Bolen Family Estates produces world class Merlot. All of our focus, attention, and passion is dedicated to delivering this one wine.

Our wine maker, Tom Rinaldi, is the pioneer of Napa Valley Merlot. For over 30 years Tom has mastered Merlot and made quite a name for himself in the process.

Our grape source for this 100% Merlot is the Beckstoffer Orchard Vineyard in the Oak Knoll District of Napa Valley. Beckstoffer’s grapes are the pinnacle of quality and synonymous with some of the best wines in the world.

When you combine our passion, Tom’s magic, and Beckstoffer’s quality. The blend is a legacy wine.

About The Winemaker:

Tom Rinaldi – There are a handful of people that can be called pioneers of Napa Valley Merlot. Tom Rinaldi is one of them. As the founding winemaker at Duckhorn and now making wines at Provenance, Tom has consistently produced some of the best Merlots in the world. Tom is a great fit on our team. He shares our passion for hand crafting Merlot and truly serves as an inspiration for us all. Tom guides our belief in letting the fruit express itself. “My job is to step in when the wolves are howling at the door.” This is great quote that sums up Tom’s style. He views himself as a sheppard and makes sure he takes care of the wine and helps it get pointed in the right direction. From there, he only steps in if there is a problem. He truly understands that the grapes are where the great wines come from.

Technical Analysis:

Varietals: 100% Merlot

Oak: 22% New French Oak

Alcohol: 15.2%

Appellation: Oak Knoll District of Napa Valley Appellation

Production: 250 Cases

Bolen Family Estates 2007 Estate Merlot 750ml Wine Bottle
Offer Expired Apr 29, 2011 at 11:59 pm
Price Redacted
Bolen Family Estates 2007 Estate Merlot 750ml Wine Bottle
Offer Expired Apr 29, 2011 at 11:59 pm
Price Redacted