Saturday, October 5, 2013

Updated Review: ***+ $$ Lyeth Meritage, Sonoma County, California, 2006 = GOOD VALUE

Check out today's pricing and retail availability for Lyeth Meritage.

By way of background, opening thoughts: Meritage (pronounced like "heritage") is the American equivalent of the Bordeaux blend.  You can't find out the grapes in this one from the label (much as you can't find out the varietals in a Bordeaux blend).  But from winery, you can find out that this is an unspecified percentage blend of cabernet sauvignon, merlot, cabernet franc, petit verdot and malbec.  With six years since vintage date, this cellared meritage should be ready-to-drink.

Original tasting and review, May, 2012: This is Lyeth Meritage, Sonoma County, California, 2006, finished at 13.5% alcohol.

In the glass: Deep magenta and opaque in the center.

On the nose: Poured at room temperature and swirled vigorously, shows shy, but deep, rich and full cabernet sauvignon nose.  Classic.  From the aroma, seems like this will be hearty and layered. 

On the palate: The primary elements on the palate are in fact quite bright on the palate, mixing red currants with a lifting tannin and acid brush.  Strawberry in tone, but blackberry and blueberry in flavor.  The finish hugs your cheeks and tongue, lengthy and clean.

In summary: Overall, rates three stars on the five-star Spirit of Wine scale.  A lithe Lyeth for its age.

Following long decant, three days kept cool in partially filled bottle:  Spicy, sweet, sandy and chocolate nose.  Yum.  Soft, full, round berry on the palate now.  More blueberry and slightly aged plum.  Gains a plus for its extra length and vitality. Becomes a good value.

Updated review, a year and a half later, now seven years from vintage date, October, 2013: Deep muddy orange red now.  Still a soft, hearty, fruited nose.  Balanced, middle-toned palate, showing ripe blackberry fruit, bright blueberry acids and a clean finish.  Rating holds solid.

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Check out today's pricing and retail availability for Lyeth Meritage.

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