On the evening of May 4, Joe Dewey, Idaho Distributing, Co., presented a wine tasting of Merryvale Starmont wines. It was good to try some of these wines. Here is the lineup and our remarks, along with the info that Joe posted. We ranked these 0-5. Our scores are in .
2009 Starmont Sauvignon Blanc, Napa Valley
“For a larger label, Starmont uses a surprising amount of barrel fermentation; even so, it keeps its fresh fruit. Full, powerful flavors of nectarine and Meyer lemon are edged by a subtle grassy, stony bite. Juicy and generous, with fruit that carries through.” – Jon Bonné, Wine Editor San Francisco Chronicle
 Great with Chicken Kabobs and Beef Kabobs that we had. This even went well with the roasted green, red and yellow peppers.
2008 Starmont Chardonnay, Napa Valley
“At the top of the list is Merryvale’s Starmont Chardonnay, a vibrant wine made at Merryvale’s solar-powered winery in south Napa from a mix of vineyards. Fresh and vibrant, with a full-bodied mix of tangerine, nectarine, peach and pear flavors that are intense, complex, layered and cleansing. This holds on to its core fruitiness. Drink now through 2013.” – James Laube 90 Points Wine Spectator
 Just not big enough for me. Good oak balance, though.
2006 Starmont Merlot, Napa Valley
“Quite rich, this Merlot shows real Napa character in the ripe fruit and quality of the tannins. It brims with blackberry, currant, cherry and herb flavors, and feels well-structured and distinguished in the mouth. Best now.” Steve Heimoff, 88 Points Wine Enthusiast.
 Not impressed with this one.
2007 Starmont Cabernet Sauvignon, Napa Valley
“Napa’s biggest strength has always been its nearly magic ability to grow Cabernet. If we’re moving toward wines that celebrate that, while shedding the winemaking fat they’ve gained in recent years, fantastic. I’m not sure 2007 fully reflects that transition, but it offers some promising hints, including the 2007 Starmont Napa Cabernet Sauvignon. A lighter touch with new oak brings out deeply extracted black cherry flavors and solid food-friendly tannins, edged by alluring olive and coffee accents that round out the black-fruit scents. Drink it young but give it some air.” – Jon Bonné, Wine Editor San Francisco Chronicle
 Green pepper which distracts from the overall wine.
2006 Merryvale Napa Merlot, Napa Valley
“A sleeper of the vintage, the 2006 Merlot (90% Merlot and the rest Petit Verdot, Malbec, and Cabernet Sauvignon) offers smoky, charcoal, plum, licorice, currant, and berry notes as well as a soft, seductive texture, medium to full body, and a delicious, forward fruit character. It should drink well for 10-12 years.
 Great with the Chicken Kabob. High tannin and good acid balance. If you want something to put away for 5 or so years, this is the one.
Overall, this was a pleasant surprise and a good tasting. Thanks Joe, for presenting this and thanks to Jackie for suggesting the kabobs. Visit the Grape Escape for more interesting wines. Cheers!