The Sterling Vineyards Napa Valley Merlot is a vivid ruby-red colour in the glass with aromas of blackberry fruit, plum and ripe black cherry. The appealing bouquet leads to a mouth coating, rich palate where additional red and black fruit flavours mingle with notes of graphite and dried spice. The viscous mouthfeel of the wine is plush and the ripe tannins are refined and polished. The Napa Valley Merlot is well balanced and elegant, offering true varietal characteristics and a sleek, flavourful finish. Kept in separate small lots until the final blending process, the grapes for the Napa Valley Merlot were picked, quickly brought to the winery and placed in tanks for a two day cold soak designed to extract colour and flavour from the grapes. The juice was then fermented dry and the young wine was placed in American (56%), French (30%) and European (14%) oak barrels for 18 months.