Sunday, October 4, 2009

**** $$ Cameron Hughes Lot 94 Oak Knoll Merlot, 2006, Napa Valley, CA - Wine Review and Rating

By way of background: Cameron Hughes Lot 94 is 100% merlot hailing from the 40-year-old vines in the new Oak Knoll District of Napa Valley, just south of Yountville. It is the coolest climate in Napa next to Carneros. Aged in about 1/3 new French oak, CH Lot 94 sports 14.6% alcohol.

In the glass: This is deep, dusty red, even through the middle of the glass

On the nose: This Oak Knoll merlot shows a bold, red, solid aroma, carrying very ripe red berries, helium and a specific note of strawberry aloft.

On the palate: A perfumed, mid-mouth sense of playful, balanced fruit is the first note. Very intriguing and memorable. It is followed by luscious, even fruit that spreads across your tongue and palate, and slowly, very slowly, creeps into the upper reaches of your jaw. It may be raspberry, or strawberry, but without the acids and with a concentrated gentle sweetness. Awesome balance.

And the finish: Goes and goes and goes. The flavors continue to creep and creep. Tannins are gentle, but noticeable; with the acids they leave the rosy red flavors to linger for the longest time.

In summary: Unique, pleasant, balanced, gently intense experience. Four stars on the Spirit of Wine scale, and a full-fledged best value.

Find Cameron Hughes lots at WineZap.

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