Spring Valley Vineyard lies twelve miles northeast of Walla Walla, amid the picturesque wheat fields of southeastern Washington, with the Blue Mountains providing the backdrop. The initial block of Merlot was planted in 1993 on a south-southwest facing hillside. The vines follow the north-south slope of the hills in vertical rows, an orientation that, combined with the declination of the slope, allows the vines to take optimal advantage of air drainage, sunshine and the reflective nature of the surrounding wheat fields.
Great care is taken when caring for the vineyard. Every grape cluster is tended by hand, including crop thinning, leaf pulling and harvesting, as well as hand-burying of individual canes to protect them during the winter in southeastern Washington.
Spring Valley Vineyard fruit is hand-picked, hand-sorted and gently de-stemmed by gravity. During the 10-20 day fermentation, each tank is tasted daily until Spring Valley Vineyard Winemaker Serge Laville decides it is time to press using wooden cage basket presses. In keeping with Spring Valley tradition, originally instituted by founding winemaker Devin Corkrum Derby, hand punch-downs occur twice a day until the end of alcoholic fermentation. The wine is transferred by pump into barrels for secondary fermentation and gets racked several times for clarity. Finally, the different lots are blended to create our six distinctive labels.
20 months in 100% French oak, 50% new.
It was definitely a warm vintage for Spring Valley Vineyards. The conditions during harvest were excellent with warm days and relatively cool nights. Picking started during the 2nd week of September, eliminating the need for a late harvest. Despite the warmer temperatures of 2014, we have not encountered any big tannins. The wines are rich but soft and elegant and naturally terroir driven.
Perfectly balanced, with aromas of rose petals and cherries and some herbal hints as well.
The mouthfeel is rich with a seamless, long finish.