Tasting Note                         

94   2009  Ridge  Estate Merlot (Santa Cruz Mtns)   12/1/17  ($40)

100% Merlot   14.2% alc
Color: Deep garnet no browning. (3.5) Bouquet: Roasted cocoa and cedar complement blackberry/cassis fruit. Powerful with dusty earth (Bordeaux style) and spice. (3.0) Body: Heavyweight with outstanding fruit, acidity and Cabernet-like tannins, yet smooth. Big, rich, tangy mouthfeel. (3.5) Flavor: Parallels bouquet, but fruit is more rich and forward here. (3.5) Finish: Parallels flavor. Long, structured and delicious. (3.5)
Overall: A fantastic Merlot that drinks more like a big Cabernet from the Medoc. The Bordeaux-style dusty earth and cedary spice are impressive. The blackberry/cassis fruit is also very attractive, meeting the subtantial, smooth tannins. Drink now, after decanting an hour or two, and in the next 1-3 years. (17)

Update 1/12/19: The bouquet has become more expressive and the tannins have resolved more, making what was an outstanding Merlot, a great one now. Should remain this good for 2-3 more years. 95+ (17.5)


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