Northstar Merlot Columbia Valley 2005
Tasting Notes This rich wine is concentrated and yet elegant, with aromas of cherry, plum, raspberry, and blackberry, finishing off with flavors of toasted oak, vanilla, coconut, mint, and toffee. Enjoy and celebrate! David Merf Merfeld, WinemakerVintage Overview Warm summer months and a cool autumn yielded a record harvest for 2005. The growing season began with moderate winter temperatures, followed by a long and warm summer which allowed prolonged hang-time and resulted in fruit with deep, concentrated flavors and intense color.Vineyards Diversity of vineyards and sub-appellations within the Columbia Valley are Northstars hallmarks. Fruit is selected from the very best possible sources throughout the Columbia Valley. Winemaker David Merfeld works closely with each grower to achieve specific fruit quality and yield parameters. Vines average 15 years old and yield grapes with concentrated varietal flavors of cherry and plum with elegant tannins. Fruit from over 14 separate vineyards and 18 different blocks contributed to the blend.Winemaking At harvest, grapes were held separately, destemmed and crushed with 25 whole berries remaining. Grapes fermented on the skins for five days with daily punch downs to extract flavor, colors and fine tannins. The wine was placed into French (70%) and American (30%) oak barrels where it underwent malolactic fermentation. The barrel rotation included 70% new barrels. The lots aged separately for 18 months with barrel-to-barrel racking occurring at three month intervals.Ideal Food Pairing Filet mignon, Roast pork loin and Robust cheeses.Technical DataTotal Acidity 0.57g/100mlpH 3.66Alcohol 14.7%Blend 80% merlot, 17% cabernet sauvignon, 3% petit verdot
The wine is a nice deep ruby color in the glass. The nose is is a nice combination of leather, cedar and rich black fruit, plum, black cherry and prune with a bit of anise over the top. The taste is very nice, with some dried herbs, mint and a hint of floral notes up front that transitions wonderfully to some rich ripe fruit midpalate, with an almost jammy characteristic beautifully offset with some dusty limestone. The tannins are somewhat mellow yet supportive of a lush, long dry finish that seems to last 30 seconds or more. A very pleasant wine to sip, but also quite food friendly as well. See my full review on my blog here: http://allaloneonaplanetfullofpeople.blogspot.com/2013/11/2005-stella-maris-columbia-valley-red.html
Great depth. The previous descriptions on here are on base. I think the blending gives this a bit more complexity than were it merlot alone. Very tasty!! -Tasted at The Hostile Grape 8/5/09
Great Merlot from Washington state. Dave Merf Merfield knows what he is doing at Northstar. Rich and deep for a Merlot. The sideways guys are crazy to bash Merlots. This is one of the best! Love the 2005! Cheers!
Cherry, and herbs on the nose. This merlot is rich and supple with enough tannin and acidity to age much longer than Washington wines are known to age. Perfect with a steak or pork with cherry sause.
Brought me back to Merlots. A very deep rich Merlot that dances on you tongue for a long aftertaste. Please decant this wine and let it open up. You will not be disappointed.
External Reviews for Northstar Merlot Columbia Valley
Wine Tasting NotesThis rich wine is concentrated and yet elegant, with aromas of cherry, plum, raspberry, and blackberry, finishing off with flavors of toasted oak, vanilla, coconut, mint, and toffee. Enjoy and celebrate!
Northstar Merlot 2005 Walla Walla and all other wine from Northstar are readily available to ship at discount prices. We carry many premium wine from across the world.
Bright ruby-red. Smoky plum, redcurrant, huckleberry, minerals, menthol and oak on the inviting nose. Then juicy and quite dry in the middle, with a tight core of bitter chocolate flavor. Distinctly restrained, even a bit tart-edged today, with a firm tannin/acid spine keeping the wine’s flavors under wraps. But seems less oaky than the Stella Maris bottling, leaving me more optimistic about the wine’s future in bottle.
Washington state Merlots are full-bodied and fresh, with concentrated fruit. This wine is soft and supple, and has enticing flavors of blackberries and cherries with a hint of coffee. Balanced and structured, it has a long, luscious finish. Serve with grilled steak, pork or chicken.
Sourced from vineyards across the Columbia Valley, Northstar’s ’05 offering exhibits a nose of red berries and toasted coconut. It’s ripe, with plush, New World tannins, a palate rich in bacon fat and chocolate and a walloping oak treatment, lending this Merlot an almost Zinfandel-like structure. Somewhat short on the finish, save for the oaky chewiness. The blend of Merlot (80%), Cabernet Sauvignon (17%), and Petit Verdot (3%) was aged 18 months on French and American oak barrels.
The Columbia Valley designated Merlot from Northstar accounts for six times as many cases as its Walla Walla Merlot, yet in quality terms it sometimes equals or even surpasses the pricier bottling. The 2005 vintage was stellar, and this lovely wine is bursting with fruit — raspberry, blackberry, plum and more. Spicy aromas and flavors wrap around chocolaty tannins; there are exotic hints of curry and plenty of toast.
The 2005 Merlot Columbia Valley contains 17% Cabernet Sauvignon and 3% Petit Verdot aged for 18 months in 70% new French and American oak. Opaque purple, it offers up an expressive nose of smoky black cherry and black currant aromas, spice box, and mineral. It has a firm, tannic entry which is a mild cause for concern. The wine has good flavors and plenty of depth but there is tannin in the finish which blunts the fruit. It may evolve and round out but that is a gamble.