Friday, March 23, 2012

Updated Review: ***+ $ Trinchero Merlot, Monterey County, California, 2004 - Wine Tasting & Review

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By way of background: Trinchero Family Merlot, Monterey County, California. The 2004 vintage is finished at 13.5% alcohol. We've allowed this bottle to put on a few years.

Original tasting and review, February, 2010:  

In the glass: Trinchero Family Merlot shows as medium dark cherry in the glass, almost opaque in the middle.

On the nose: Poured cool with a brief decant and swirled vigorously, this California merlot shows an intriguing aged wood and leather and hint of bramble.  Old world undertones, with still-obvious ripe fruit.  Old-time Inglenook-y.  

On the palate: The first element on the palate is the grainy saddle-leather that you already detected in the nose.  That carries quite a dry black cherry grip, then hitting the edges of your cheeks with substantial acids. 

And the wrap-up: As the sip fades, the brambly elements come back into view, stretched for a quite lengthy finish. 

In summary: Overall, the experience is stingy with fruit, but allows the fruit to slowly ease out into each sip.  A new world heart in old world clothing. Rates three full stars on the five-star Spirit of Wine scale.  Nice balance and promise for future too.  Great value.

Following a three-day decant under vacuum in a partially-filled bottle:  Nose and palate held fast with the extra time.  Adding plus for excellent balance now, plus attitude.

Updated review, over two years later,   March, 2012:  Consistent color and nose, even after two years.  The palate continues an old-world tone, well-integrated now if perhaps a bit less intense.  Holds to its three plus star rating.  Remarkable for such a value-priced wine, now eight years old.  Following long decant, full day kept cool in partially filled bottle: Soft, funky, intriguing nose.  Still solid palate.

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  1. Just found a bottle of this that's been hidden in the laundry room. Nice to see a good review.......... Not a wine drinker at all; best to enjoy this quickly since it appears it may have lost flavor over time, or ok to let it sit a few more years?

  2. This was nice at five or six years of age. I didn't try younger, but no reason to let it age longer than that.