1997 Napa Valley Merlot

Current Releases1995 Napa Valley Merlot

$27 per 750ml bottle

Napa Valley's 1997 vintage shows the effects of a near perfect growing season. The spring of '97 warmed up early, giving the vineyards a nice awakening from winter dormancy. The summer provided consistent high temperatures to promote grape maturity, and a warm, rain-free September topped off the season. Keenan harvested Merlot at the peak of maturity.

As with past vintages of Keenan Merlot, the wine was produced from a blend of Keenan's mountain grown estate fruit, and fruit harvested from select vineyards within the Napa Valley. The Estate Merlot grapes from Spring Mountain District supply body, structure and density, while the purchased grapes soften the wine and add complexity.

After harvest, the Merlot was crushed and fermented in small lots. The wine was then aged for twenty months in French oak barrels. Ten percent Cabernet Sauvignon was added to the wine before bottlling, and seven months of bottle aging have been allowed. The resulting wine shows intense plum and black cherry aromas that are enhanced by a toasty oak background. Consumers can expect the wine to open up to a rich, variety full-bodied wine that pleases the palate.

"The 1997 Merlot Napa exhibited aromas of berry, coffee, and mocha. With soft, medium-bodied fruit flavors, it will drink well for 6-7 years. Richer and denser, with more structure, volume, and flavor is the 1997 Merlot Spring Mountain (District) Estate... it is a very good effort that should drink nicely for a decade or more."

--Robert M. Parker, Jr., Wine Advocate, Dec. 2000



Riverside International Wine Competition

Gold Medal

2000 California State Fair

Silver Medal 89 Points

2000 San Francisco Wine Competition
Silver Medal

2000 Orange County Fair
Silver Medal

Jerry Mead's International Wine Competition
Silver Medal



Total Acidity:

0.60 grams/100mL



Residual Sugar:


Bottling Date:

August, 1999


90% Merlot
10% Cabernet Sauvignon


2930 cases

Home | About the Winery | Virtual Tasting Room | Cellar Notes | Wine Club

Awards & Reviews | Order Form | Library | Guest Book | Tours & Map