2006 Napa Valley Merlot
California: Napa Valley
There is something very special about this wine. It shows great fruit, both on the nose and on the palate, but it was the overall balance that really captivated us. Earthiness provides a wonderful counterpoint to the fruit. Plush tannins balance against the initial softness. Lively acids provide seem to frame everything in a way as to make this lovely wine feel complete. A very food friendly wine with tons of flexibility, we can’t think of many foods that this wine would not work with. We paired ours with a wood oven pizza, with prosciutto, arugula and spicy red peppers. This pairing was a delicious treat, with the wine providing a tasty, between-bites cleanse. This 2006 Saddleback Cellars Napa Valley Merlot, which comes, in large part from the winery’s own Estate vineyard, is highly recommended.
Darkest ruby hues, with a deeper and darker heart. As with the former vintage of this wine, a fine ring of bright red ruby encircles the wine. After swirling, skinny, wine-colored tears move slowly down the glass.
Heady and full on the nose, a big rush of jammy blackberry, raspberry, red plum and black currant leap from the glass. These are closely followed by leather, soft spice, dried fall leaves, blueberry, black cherry and hints of subtle cocoa, sweetwood and anise.
Dark mixed blackberry, black cherry, black plum and cassis step out in front. As the wine settles onto the palate, it reveals cherry candy, dried leaves, soft leather, toasty oak, soft spice and a hint of minerality.
Very long and full of dark fruit throughout. Gradually, the fruit fades and is replaced by spice and earthy characteristics. At the tail end, a soft, mineral dryness is accompanied by a hint of black pepper.