From its very well-focused aromas of caramel, dark cherries and sweet tobacco to its deep, impressively filled flavors, this classy and yet very solid Merlot demonstrates a keen sense of careful composition. It backs up its ample, optimally ripened fruit with good, grippy tannins, yet it always adheres to the imperatives of suppleness that mark fine Merlot. It finishes on the tough and astringent side, and it deserves another five years of cellaring in which to fully come into its own.
Connoisseurs' Guide to California Wines(From 2002 Vintage) 10% Cabernet Sauvignon. In the minds of many, Duckhorn has become something of a gold standard when it comes to Napa Valley Merlot, and this deep, keenly crafted example serves as an exemplary case in point. Its unstinting fruit is enriched with plenty of complementary oak, and it maintains a wonderful sense of juicy cherries even as its well-woven tannins provide a nice bit of finishing grip. Its optimal ripeness comes without evident heat, and it offers immense immediate pleasure while promisin...