Substance Vineyard Collection Northridge Merlot 2017
|Region||United States, Washington, Wahluke Slope|
Coming from a site on the Wahluke Slope, the 2017 Merlot Northridge Vineyard is also medium to full-bodied and concentrated yet has a touch more oomph and density than the Stoneridge release. Redcurrants, tobacco, cigar, and toasted spice notes all emerge from this medium to full-bodied, richly textured, balanced Merlot. It too will keep for at least 5-7 years.
Moderately saturated bright medium red. A bit deeper-pitched through less perfumed than the Stoneridge Merlot, with plum and redcurrant aromas complicated by mocha, tobacco leaf, earth and minerals plus a whiff of savory game. A step up in texture, weight and ripeness as well (at 15%, this is higher in alcohol than the other Merlot and the Bx Red Wine), but with good shape and energy to its red fruit, earth and spice flavors. Here too the tannins are quite fine but a bit more substantial, with the finish offering lingering plum and spice notes. More Right Bank in style than the Stoneridge, and less purely fruity. Initially, I wanted more obvious spine and thrust but this wine grew on me as its tannins firmed up. Is there enough mid-palate sweetness for the tannins?
The 2017 Merlot Northridge Vineyard is ruby, with the first sign of garnet starting to appear on the rim. The nose gives up soft nutty aromas of dried cherries and stewed plum sauce. Medium to full-bodied, the 15% alcohol wine seems to have been pushed almost too far, with elements of volatility in the mouth followed by a tannic and gripping finish.