Generation Merlot 2013
Wine Club Price 23.40
87% Merlot, 8% Malbec, 3% Cabernet Franc, 2% Cabernet Sauvignon. Bottle aging this wine has refined its flavours and softened its tannins. What it may have lost in freshness and primary fruit character, it has gained in subtlety and complexity—even mystery! An elegant expression of dark fruit, chocolate, and spice flavours. Its silky texture is balanced by ample acidity with a finish that is mineral-infused, yet vibrant. Overall, this wine shows fine balance and length.
Vintage 2013 was a blessing after a string of cool Okanagan vintages (2008-2012)* marked by slow ripening and late harvests, but it wasn’t without challenges. A warmer than normal spring brought an early bud break and, notwithstanding an extremely rainy June, the growing season was progressing 1-2 weeks ahead of normal. On balance, July and August kept us on-track with above average temperatures and grapes maturing along a normal ripening curve. Then the warmest vintage since 2003 cooled off just in time for harvest, interrupting what had looked like a terrific vintage. More than 71mm of rain fell on the heart of Okanagan wine country in September, significantly delaying the grape harvest. “I’m pretty sure it was the wettest September ever and you had to be on your toes and adjust crop sizes to achieve the kind of balance we had targeted,” said Stefan Arnason. He continues: “The abrupt change in mid-September spread out the harvest, slowed ripening and resulted in wines with full flavours, moderate alcohol levels and vivid acidity. We could be in for a classic year.”
The fruit for Poplar Grove’s Generation Merlot was harvested from Poplar Grove’s Naramata Bench Estate Vineyards. The bunches were hand-picked & sorted in the vineyard; after destemming, the berries were hand sorted again to ensure that only pristine fruit was included in the ferment. During fermentation, hand plunging the must & the judicious use of pumping over ensured the optimum level of tannin extraction. Malolactic fermentation occured in barrel over the winter & finished in the spring of the following year. The Generation Merlot spent 21 months in French oak barrels followed by 36 months of cellar aging prior to release.
For our wines, bottle aging is neither an obligation nor a performance—it is simply the way to become better; to develop a range of flavours and fragrances over time that are more remarkable and enjoyable than those of young wines.Then when to drink it? Well, time has accomplished its good work. Now its up to you; aren’t the most appropriate occasions simply those when you most feel like it?