2013 Stagecoach Vineyard Merlot - Miner Family Winery

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Damson plum, cigar smoke, blackberry pie filling. Acai berry, coffee liqueur, black licorice. Eucalyptus leaf and intense tobacco, butterscotch and dark chocolate drizzle. Piercing blackness led by dark cherry compote and espresso shadows over cedar, clove, and crème brûlée. Gourmet fruit cake is completely overwhelmed by volcanic earth and marvelous structure in the form of dry pixelated tannin. This 2013 Stagecoach Vineyard Merlot by Miner Family Winery is serious Merlot from Napa Valley's largest vineyard.

Located in the Vaca Mountains on the eastern end of Napa Valley, the Stagecoach Vineyard is one of Napa's most impressive achievements. It is officially Napa's largest contiguous vineyard with over 600 acres planted to vine. Stagecoach boasts a wide range of varied terrain laden with heavily volcanic soils, and is one of the most vineyard designated sites in the region. This bottling, crafted by Miner Family Winery using fruit entirely from the Stagecoach Vineyard, provides a great look into what makes this site so impressive. This wine is composed of 80% Merlot plus an addition of 20% Cabernet Sauvignon and possesses fantastic tension and concentration. While certainly fruit forward there is a wonderful vein of dark minerality present here that is rarely seen in California Merlot. This stuff is well made and age-worthy, and is currently strutting its stuff with authority.