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2013 Merlot
Tasting Notes

2013 Merlot

Bashing Merlot is oh so 2004. Here at Scheid, we have never wavered in our deep love of this alluring, classic Bordeaux variety. The geographical spread of our estate vineyards gives us the ability to craft a luscious and complex Merlot that is unabashedly juicy. As equally comfortable with prime rib as it is with pizza, it is a wine that will stand-up to full-flavored fare, but can also mellow out with more subtly-prepared dishes. Versatility is Merlot’s middle name and it is quite often our go-to red on the dinner table. Our 2013 vintage displays a mix of dark fruits, plum, blackberry, and blueberry accentuated by savory dried herbs and a hint of mocha. Ripe fruit and velvety soft tannins are graced by a touch of spice.

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The Merlot was sourced from three of our estate vineyards: Hacienda, Mesa del Rio and San Lucas. Our Hacienda Vineyard, the majority of the blend, is in the Greenfield area, known for foggy mornings and cool afternoon winds. Mesa del Rio Vineyard is also situated in this cooler climate zone. Cool-climate Merlot tends to have greater color extraction and more intense, concentrated flavors, with a spicy undercurrent. San Lucas Vineyard, comprising the remaining 20%, is located south of our Greenfield winery. Here, the days are warmer and longer, yet cool down quite dramatically when the sun goes down, recording a greater day-to-night temperature differential. This brings out a lush black cherry fruitiness with a soft-on-the-palate feel. The resulting blend is a wonderfully balanced wine with abundant, full fruit, and a subtle spiciness and earthiness. The 2013 growing season was about as perfect as a winemaker could wish—mild temperatures throughout the spring, a warm but not overly hot summer, and sunny conditions that held until the last grape was picked. On the heels of an excellent 2012 vintage, it exceeded our expectations in every way.
Upon arrival at the winery, the grapes were destemmed, crushed, and fermented in small 1-ton open top fermenters. Punchdowns, where the firm cap of skins and seeds that bubble up and form on the surface during red fermentation are submerged, were conducted three times a day for two weeks. After settling the heavy solids, the juice was racked clean to barrels (a mix of 50% Hungarian, 40% American and 10% French oak) and aged for 18 months. Prior to bottling, the Merlot was blended with a small amount of Cabernet Sauvignon to add the complexity and structure that allows for longer aging. The bottled wine was laid down for an additional eight months prior to release. It is wonderful to drink now, yet also suitable for additional aging.
Varietal Composition
95% Merlot, 5% Cabernet Sauvignon
60% Hacienda, 20% Mesa del Rio, 20% San Lucas Vineyard
Harvest Date
November 9, 2013
Harvest Brix
Alcohol %
18 months in 50% Hungarian, 40% American and 10% French oak barrels
Cases Produced
Bottling Date
July 6, 2015