• ST: 92

    Stephen Tanzer Score

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  • WS: 88

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    88

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  • JR: 90

    Jancis Robinson Score

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  • WA: 93

    Wine Advocate Score

    93

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Beringer Blass Wine Estates Merlot Stags' Leap Winery Napa Valley Merlot 6 Premier 1996

Winemaker's Notes:

Smaller-than-normal yields and especially warm weather in August produced highly concentrated grapes and the especially rich blueberry and blackberry aromas and flavors of this wine. Bancroft Ranch Merlot has a quality I can only describe as all-around richness. Unlike some Merlots I've tasted, the wine from Bancroft has no `hole in the middle.' It delivers a consistent message from the first waft of its characteristic aromas through its long finish. I think this richness comes mostly from the concentrated blackberry and blueberry flavors but also partly from a kind of earthy quality typical of the vineyard. Underlying these flavors are more subtle notes of anise, tobacco and leather. I've found that these flavors become more pronounced as the wine ages and evolves, which makes me eager to monitor this vintage well into the next century. -Ed Sbragia, Winemaster

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Beringer Vineyards:
  It is impossible to take Beringer’s long history lightly. With their 215 acre plot of land purchased in 1875 and the winery founded in 1876, Jacob and Frederick Beringer’s winery is the oldest continually operating winery in Napa Valley. In 2001, it was named a historic district in the National Register for Historic Places. Current winemaker Laurie Hook and winemaster Ed ... Read more
  It is impossible to take Beringer’s long history lightly. With their 215 acre plot of land purchased in 1875 and the winery founded in 1876, Jacob and Frederick Beringer’s winery is the oldest continually operating winery in Napa Valley. In 2001, it was named a historic district in the National Register for Historic Places. Current winemaker Laurie Hook and winemaster Ed Sbragia continue to draw from over a dozen vineyards to create world-class wines from varying soil compositions and climates. The winery managed to survive, and even thrive, during Prohibition by selling sacramental wines with a federal license. Since the wine was being made for religious purposes, it was legal! A unique aspect of Beringer is the tunnel system that was carved into the side of Spring Mountain around 1880. Chinese immigrant workers, the same workers that helped build the Trans-Continental Railroad, spent years hand-chiseling the 1,200 feet of tunnels. To this day, the tunnels act as a natural insulator, keeping the temperature between 58 and 60 degrees year-round, ideal for storing wine. Read less

External Reviews for Beringer Blass Wine Estates Merlot Stags' Leap Winery Napa Valley Merlot 6 Premier

External Review
Source: JJ Buckley Fine Wines
01/16/2009

Complex, but tight and brooding. Dark earth, black plum, licorice, leather and smoke in the nose. Deep, full black-cherry and coffee flavors, but very subdued now. Emphasis on structure and intensity. Not an obvious wine, nor for cur-rent enjoyment, ... Wine Enthusiast. A Merlot wine from California in USA. 1996 Beringer Merlot Bancroft Ranch 3000ml



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Smaller-than-normal yields and especially warm weather in August produced highly concentrated grapes and the especially rich blueberry and blackberry aromas and flavors of this wine. Bancroft Ranch Merlot has a quality I can only describe as all-around richness. Unlike some Merlots I've tasted, the wine from Bancroft has no `hole in the middle.' It delivers a consistent message from the first waft of its characteristic aromas through its long finish. I think this richness comes mostly from the concentrated blackberry and blueberry flavors but also partly from a kind of earthy quality typical of the vineyard. Underlying these flavors are more subtle notes of anise, tobacco and leather. I've found that these flavors become more pronounced as the wine ages and evolves, which makes me eager to monitor this vintage well into the next century. -Ed Sbragia, Winemaster

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