Chapman Merlot 2019
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October 28 - 29, 2019
Drink now through 2027.
Clear, deep ruby in colour. This single-vineyard wine begins with aromatics of dark chocolate, cedarwood, and vanilla. Flavours of dark plum, wild blackberry and baking spice combine with muscular tannins. This full-bodied red has medium acidity and a long satisfying finish.
The 2019 winter brought extremes: warm 12° January days to lows of - 22° and lots of snow in February. When the buds started pushing, we noted that the colder months had resulted in a bit of bud and vine death in our Naramata Bench Vineyards. Bud burst was two weeks later than average due to the long winter. The beginning of Okanagan spring was one of the driest on record. However, by the end of June, the valley saw a cooling trend that lasted through most of July and brought much precipitation. At the end of July, the real Okanagan summer started with hot sunny days and little precipitation. The grapes soaked in the summer heat and quickly made up for lost time. Variation in our reds happened right on schedule. September was wetter than usual. October was dry with 15° days and 2 to 6° nights. On October 9th, a -4° frost dropped the leaves in most of our vineyards. After the frost, the weather was perfect to hang the fruit until the end of October, with all the remaining vineyards achieving the right amount of favour, sugar, and acid. No Floods. No Smoke. Overall, it was a low tonnage year with excellent ripe fruit across all varietals in our vineyards.
The Merlot grapes from our Chapman Vineyard were handpicked on October 28 and October 29, 2019. The grapes were sorted prior to crushing. Following crush the juice and skins were cold-soaked for four days. Alcoholic fermentation took place at controlled temperatures in stainless steel tanks; breaking and soaking the cap through twice daily with pumpovers allowed for full integration. Malolactic fermentation occurred in barrel over the winter & finished in the spring of 2020. 21 months aging in 25% new oak. The remainder was aged in a combination of 1 to 3-year-old French oak barriques and bottle aged for one year.