Amuse Bouche Napa Valley Merlot, by Heidi Barrett
 

2004 Amuse Bouche Napa Valley Merlot

2004 Amuse Bouche Napa Valley Merlot wine with label artwork by Ira Yeager

 

Our 2004 Amuse Bouche, a Pomerol-style Merlot/Cabernet Franc blend is made from our vineyards in the Napa Valley. Heidi feels that the 2004 (our third vintage of Amuse Bouche Napa Valley Merlot Wine) will be another special wine. We anticipate a big, ripe Merlot characterized by elegance and structure.

Our grapes, weighing in at just under seven tons, were harvested on September 12 (two weeks earlier than our '03 harvest) at 25.0 brix. The '04 growing season got off to an early start and will be remembered for an extended heat wave in September during prime ripening-time and an overall lighter crop. We were fortunate to pick our fruit at the onset of the untimely heat, avoiding an over-ripe character that plagued many vineyards where the fruit had a longer hang time. Our Pomerol cuvee blend is multi-faceted, showing ripe, balanced, concentrated, lush and solidly woven generous fruit with seamless and supple flavors of espresso, licorice, caramel, plums and blueberries.

We are pleased to announce that the work of a new artist will enliven our '04 bottles - and will feature a different acclaimed artist with each successive vintage. Renowned Napa Valley artist Ira Yeager has been commissioned to create the '04 artwork.

 

Accolades for the 2004 Amuse Bouche Napa Valley Merlot

93 POINTS
"Blended from Merlot and Cabernet Franc, this wine is styled along the lines of a Right Bank Bordeaux, and the finished product offers a very plausible likeness.  Rich and concentrated but not heavy, it is also deeply flavored without being overt or inelegant.  Oak notes are prominent but pleasing, lending a smokiness and spiciness that works very well with the fruit notes, which recall black cherries and dark berries along with a subtle red fruit backnote.  Remarkably complex and integrated for such a young wine, this is a very impressive bottling."
- Michael Franz, Wine Review Online, May 8, 2007

93 POINTS
"This is one of those superripe, superopulent reds that makes tasters stop and pause. With 94 percent Merlot and the remainder Cab Franc, it's so ripe in cassis, cherry and chocolate truffle flavors, so smooth in tannins, so voluptuous and balanced, it can only have been made in Napa Valley, and by a winemaker of the stature of Heidi Peterson Barrett. Drink now-through 2010, at least."
- Wine Enthusiast (3/07)

91 POINTS
"Saturated ruby-red.High-toned, slightly medicinal aromas of blackberry, black raspberry and bitter chocolate. Rich and densely packed, with distinctly backward flavors of black fruits, minerals, graphite, licorice and dark chocolate, all lifted by intriguing peppery and floral nuances. I like this wine's restrained sweetness and focus, not to mention its suave texture. Finishes with sweet tannins and excellent length. This Saint-Emilion blend has been consistently fresh and interesting in recent years."
- Stephen Tanzer, International Wine Cellar (01/07)

90 POINTS
"This blend of 98% Merlot and 2% Cabernet Franc from the eastern hills of St. Helena exhibits a dark plum/purple color as well as a big, rich perfume of toffee, mocha, chocolate, espresso roast, and berry fruit. Medium-bodied, pure, and elegant, with an attractive, savory finish."
- Robert Parker Jr., Wine Advocate (12/06)

Top 100 Wines of the Year
“…it’s so supple and finely textured that it will find plenty of fans at its price.  Succulent plum and black cherry fruit, subtle oak and background notes of tar and coffee close with refreshing acidity.”
- Wines of the Year issue, San Francisco Chronicle (12/3/06)

 

View other vintages:

2012 Amuse Bouche Napa Valley Merlot 2011 Amuse Bouche Napa Valley Merlot 2010 Amuse Bouche Napa Valley Merlot 2009 Amuse Bouche Napa Valley Merlot 2008 Amuse Bouche Napa Valley Merlot
2012 Vintage 2011 Vintage 2010 Vintage 2009 Vintage 2008 Vintage
         
2007 Amuse Bouche Napa Valley Merlot 2006 Amuse Bouche Napa Valley Merlot 2005 Amuse Bouche Napa Valley Merlot 2004 Amuse Bouche Napa Valley Merlot 2003 Amuse Bouche Napa Valley Merlot
2007 Vintage 2006 Vintage 2005 Vintage 2004 Vintage 2003 Vintage
         
2002 Amuse Bouche Napa Valley Merlot        
2002 Vintage