Northstar Merlot 2013



Northstar Merlot 2013

92pts – Wine Spectator

90pts – Wine Enthusiast

vintage overview

The 2013 growing season was warm and consistent throughout, perfect for the vines to ripen. Harvest started early in mid-August and extended into early November as fall brought cooler temperatures. The long, warm 2013 growing season resulted in beautifully ripe and balanced wines.


Diversity of vineyards and sub-appellations within the Columbia Valley are Northstar’s hallmarks. Fruit is selected from the very best possible sources throughout the Columbia Valley. Winemaker David “Merf ” Merfeld works closely with each grower to achieve specific fruit quality and yield parameters. Vines average over 20 years of age and yield grapes with concentrated varietal flavors of cherry and plum with elegant tannins. Fruit from more than 10 separate vineyards and 15 different blocks contributed to the blend.


At harvest, grapes were held separately, destemmed and crushed with 60% whole berries remaining. Grapes fermented on the skins for five to seven days with daily punch downs to extract flavor, colors and fine tannins. The wine was placed into 90% French oak — 59% of which was new oak barrels — where it underwent malolactic fermentation. The wine aged for 18 months with racking occurring at three month intervals.

tasting notes

“The 2013 vintage has rich concentrated aromas of cherry, raspberry and vanilla that lead into flavors of spice and chocolate. It is subtle and soft with a lingering toasted oak finish. This wine was created to enjoy now, or for many years to come as it will age gracefully. Enjoy!”
– David “Merf ” Merfeld, Winemaker

technical data

blend: 75% merlot, 23% cabernet sauvignon and 2% petit verdot
total acidity: 0.53g/100ml
ph: 3.75
alcohol: 14.7%
food: herbed leg pairings of lamb, beef, and grilled vegetables