The 2009 Keenan Merlot is 100% Merlot, 77% from Keenan's Spring Mountain vineyards, and 23% from its vineyards in Napa Carneros. Grapes are hand harvested and de-stemmed before undergoing a fermentation of 10-14 days. The wine is then aged for a full 18 months in a combination of French and American oak barrels (33% new). The 2009 Keenan Merlot opens with distinctly Pomerol-like hints of violets on the nose, with Keenan's signature spiciness emerging on entry. Rich, dark, and full on the palate, the flavor impression remains gracefully layered, deep, and elegant, from the fruit-forward initial entry, to the penetrating, emphatically forceful finish.
Deep ruby-garnet in color, the 2009 Bouchard Beaune du Château opens with discreet aromas of raspberry, violets, and cinnamon/spice. Quick swirls in the glass unlock notes of ripe cherry fruit, well-integrated with subtle hints of oak. On the palate, the fruit is silky, pure, and wonderfully refined, but with a sneaky intensity of flavor that keeps growing as the wine airs. The tannins are well-integrated, supple, and harmonious, but with considerable grip as well. Immensely enjoyable now for its pure, graceful Pinot Noir fruit, this wine offers at least 7 to 10 years of aging potential.