*2006 Merus Cabernet Sauvignon
Merus Cabernet Sauvignon, Napa Valley, USA 2006
The 2006 Merus is deep inky purple in color with intense aromas of black cherries, layered with exotic spice, hints ofcinnamon, mocha, dark chocolate, cassis and blackberries. In the mouth, the entry possesses tremendous intensity anda massive palate impression. Mouth coating flavors with an abundance of dark cherry fruit on the opening followed bydark dense fruit, dark chocolate and exotic spices together with abundant velvety tannins, gives this wine its structureand rich multi-layered texture. This wine expands in the mouth for a long finish. Given its youthful character, the 2006Merus will benefit from cellaring for at least five to fifteen years.
Although closed at present, Merus’ inky/purple-colored 2006 Cabernet Sauvignon displays enormous power and richness. It is a massive, blockbuster-styled effort possessing black fruits, plenty of spicy oak, hints of licorice and graphite, and mouth-staining tannins and extract in the finish. (RP)
Intense and rustic, with chewy mineral, anise, dried currant and earth notes. Full-bodied, this is concentrated and long on the finish, but needs time to soften. Best from 2011 through 2017. 1,200 cases made. (WS)
Merus began as the quintessential “garage wine,” made by Merus founders Erika J. Gottl and Mark Herold in the two-car garage behind their home in the town of Napa. The wine won international renown starting with its first vintage in 1998, but the garage imposed serious limitations. The very hands-on Merus winemaking regimen was cramped by lack of space, wine storage had to be outsourced, and legal restrictions barred visitors or tastings.
When William Foley brought Merus into his Foley Family Wines group at the end of 2007, one of his first goals was to find a Napa Valley winery site worthy of the brand. A few months later he acquired a historic ranch tucked into a canyon on the east side of the valley. One of Napa’s fabled “ghost wineries,” it had been abandoned in the wake of Prohibition and only recently brought back to life.
Now the fully updated winery includes custom-made winemaking equipment and 7,000 square feet of caves for barrel storage. The winery’s new tasting salon and a second tasting area in the caves were stunningly renovated by Merus co-founder Erika Gottl’s Amsterdam-based UXUS design consultancy.