Cart 0 items: $0.00

Snowden Vineyards

2021 Merlot Lost Vineyard

The very dry 2021 growing season gave us a more assertive Merlot than usual, with ample fruit balanced by refreshing acidity and the rocky minerality of our Lost Vineyard site.  The fruit was harvested by hand on September 6, 2021, fermented by wild, native yeasts, aged 19 months in French oak barrels, and bottled in the spring of 2023.  Drought resulted in a small crop in '21 -- 55% below average for the Lost Vineyard block.  Reserving what was needed for the Ranch blend left us with a single barrel to bottle as a 100% Merlot varietal -- 288 bottles, making it what we call a "family wine," but one which we're pleased to share while it lasts.

In Stock
Add To Cart
Wine Specs
Napa Valley
Vineyard Designation
Lost Vineyard
Harvest Date
September 6, 2021
19 months in French oak, 50% new and 50% used.
Bottling Date
May 4, 2023
Residual Sugar
Fermented dry, no sugar added.
Alcohol %
Wine Profile
Vineyard Notes
The 2021 growing season began with very little water in the soils and continued to walk a fine line, right at the edge of the rainfall required to meet the physiological needs of the vines. Spring was mild and clear, so flowering unfolded under ideal conditions. Low rain resulted in short shoot growth and little little work to do in the “passes” to remove lateral shoots and then leaves. Fortunately, there were no heat spikes or drying offshore winds -- a heat wave would have been disastrous for the crop in such a dry year. The crop was light, with small clusters and tiny berries. The reds began coming in with the Merlot on September 6; the first Cabernet Sauvignon came in on September 11. Overall, yields were 30% to 60% below average, depending on the block, but the fruit quality was superb, giving us wines intense with nerve and style.
Production Notes
The '21 Ranch and Merlot are the first of our wines to appear in our new bottle -- a straight-sided bottle which is
Winemaker Notes
The very dry 2021 growing season gave us a Merlot which is unusually dense, spirited and bold. Notes of blackberry, mocha and raspberry are enlivened by chewy tannins and bright acidity. We were able to bottle fewer than 25 cases, making the 2021 Merlot a rare wine only few will have the opportunity to enjoy.