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Grgich Hills Merlot Napa Valley 2017

Grgich Hils Collection by Philglas & Swiggot

  • Size: 750ml
  • Vintage: 2017
  • ABV: 14.5%
  • Origin: Napa Valley / California/USA
  • Grapes: Merlot


Miljenko “Mike” Grgich first gained international recognition at the celebrated “Paris Tasting” of 1976. Then, in a now-historic blind tasting, a panel of eminent French judges swirled, sniffed, and sipped an array of the fabled white Burgundies of France and a small sampling of upstart Chardonnays from the Napa Valley. When their scores were tallied, the French judges were shocked: they had chosen the 1973 Chateau Montelena Chardonnay, crafted by Mike Grgich,  as the finest white wine in the world. Mon Dieu! The results stunned the international wine establishment and immediately earned Mike a reputation as one of the greatest winemakers in the world.

The Paris Tasting served notice to the world that the California wine industry was on the move, and it laid the groundwork for the creation of Grgich Hills Cellar. After his victory in Paris, Mike sat down with Austin Hills and his sister, Mary Lee Strebl, from the Hills Bros and in 1977, they started Grgich Hills. It was an ideal partnership. Austin owned premium vineyards in Rutherford, in the heart of the Napa Valley, and with his extensive background in business, he put the winery on its financial feet. Mike, with his fierce commitment to making wines of the highest quality, began producing what immediately became our signature wine: the exquisite, richly complex Chardonnays that win awards and delight wine lovers across America and throughout the world.

Their Merlot grows in cooler American Canyon and Carneros vineyards and in warmer Yountville vineyards of the winery. All three vineyards are blended to create a balanced, robust wine that combines the richness and depth from the warmer climates and perfume and bright fruitiness from the cooler climates. Committed to natural winegrowing and sustainability, all estate vineyards are farmed without artificial fertilizers, pesticides or herbicides, and they are certified organic.

This has a medium ruby colour. The nose is intriguing and savoury with baking spice and dried herbs - sage, bay leaf, there is a pine-needle element, too - crunchy blackberry and dark plum. The palate is dry and full-bodied; sour cherries, black plum and blackberry blend elegantly into the subtle and restrained oak use. The wine has medium, rounded & polished tannin. This should be decanted for about 30 minutes to an hour to give maximum pleasure.