2013 TEXTBOOK Vineyards Merlot
Napa Valley

Textbook Rutherford Merlot

  • Superb sites in the renown Napa Valley AVA highlight the world-class pedigree of this release
  • Classic Bordelaise winemaking (handwork in Napa Valley vineyard, modest use of new French oak barrels, egg-white fining) partnered with a touch of Oakville District Cabernet Sauvignon provides a richly textured and balanced result

Buy this wine

Price: $25 per bottle

Shipping and handling included at no charge on 6+ bottles!


"Proprietors Jonathan and Susan Pey have produced a beautiful 2012 Merlot from Rutherford. The color is nearly black and the wine is deep and full-bodied with lots of chocolaty berry fruit. This is a bigger, bolder, more exuberant, forceful style of Merlot than one normally sees in California. It should drink well for 7-10 years."
- Robert Parker, The Wine Advocate, November 2014

"A stylish, complex Merlot with good depth and balance, and a long, lightly tannic finish. It tastes of plum, red licorice, cassis, herbs, and spicy oak. Pomerol-like in style."
- Restaurant Wine, Issue #147-149, 2013

"Full-bodied, opulent and endearing... another great buy from TEXTBOOK."
- Robert Parker, The Wine Advocate, October 2013

"Inky purple. Aromas and flavors of dark berries and cherry pit, with a chocolatey overtone. Shows modest concentration to its bitter cherry and cassis flavors, which pick up a peppery nuance with air. Closes on a spicy note, with good clarity and soft tannins."
- Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar, May/June 2013


Vintage 2013 followed the excellent 2012 and led to debates as to which vintage was “better”. Our sense is they are both very, very high quality; both had abundant sunshine, cool evenings and a dry harvest season. The even weather patterns in September allowed harvest to occur at a more relaxed pace, which is always good for high-quality winemaking. Our 2013 Napa Valley Merlot lots were deeply colored, richly textured and showed great promise.  


Originally brought to the United States in the 1850's from Pomerol by Antoine Delmas, Merlot is, at its best, a textured wine capable of great power and elegance. Our Merlot comes from two blocks located within the famed Napa Valley AVA. Each site brings unique attributes and adds complexity. These sites showcase diverse gravelly and loam soils. The Calistoga lot brings backbone, and gorgeous sweet red fruit. The Rutherford lot showcases color and deeply textured, high-quality tannins. The small Oakville Cabernet fraction showcases aromatics and power. Together, they complete a wonderful package. Exemplary sustainable farming practices are employed in these sites and after veraison unevenly ripened bunches were hand culled which reduced yield to about 6.3 pounds per vine (@ 3.1 tons/acre).


Hand-picked clusters were field sorted, and then hand-sorted at an average of 25.6 Brix. Cold soaking for 2 days in open-top temperature-controlled fermenters developed color and flavor in the absence of alcohol. Fermentation began spontaneously with prevailing yeasts and two daily punch downs kept the cap immersed in must, extracting superb flavor and structure. After innoculation with cultured yeasts, fermentation completed and was followed by sixteen days on the skins. The must was gently pressed into French oak barriques where it slowly completed ML fermentation. The press fraction was not used. Barrels were of the highest quality; 100% French, 35% new, two-year air-dried, medium-plus toast and handbent by Cadus and Francois Freres in central France. Our final assemblage included a soupçon of Oakville District Cabernet Sauvignon. Fourteen months barrel maturation with two rackings and one egg white fining integrated flavors and developed a silky mouth-feel.


Regional Composition: 100% Napa Valley (74% Calistoga, 22% Rutherford, 4% Oakville)  
Varietal Composition: 96% Merlot, 4% Oakville Cabernet Sauvignon
pH: 3.66
TA: 0.57 g/100mL
Alcohol: 14%

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