The Carneros area is planted overwhelmingly with Chardonnay and Pinot Noir, at 51% and 44% of the total acreage, respectively. And this is not without good reason as the climate is ideal for these two grape varieties. However, Carneros is a special, if not magical place for Merlot. A place where the grapes can hang deep into October, developing additional layers of ripeness without losing freshness or acidity.
We are very fortunate to work with grower Larry Hyde, who has been growing grapes in Carneros for over 40 years. Block #38 features a selection of Merlot from the historic "Three Palms" vineyard planted on St. George rootstock. The quadrilateral cane configuration opens up the canopy for light penetration, and we leave only 1-cluster per shoot, so each grape hangs freely, never crowded by its neighbor. The yields are minuscule.