Vampire Merlot was harvested from cool-climate, coastal vineyards at the southern end of the Central Coasts Paso Robles viticultural district. At this site, sunny summer days are tempered by daily afternoon fog rolling in off the nearby Morro Bay and Pacific Ocean. Picked at peak ripeness, our Merlot is fermented on the skins for two weeks, with three-times-daily pumpovers, the traditional method of extraction which brings rich color and supple tannins to the new wine. Aged with a combination of both French and American oak, our Merlot develops graceful fruit flavors in the cellar, complemented by subtle shadings of vanilla and toast from the oak. At the completion of the aging process, this Merlot was carefully blended with 8% Cabernet Sauvignon for added depth and structure, as well as 8% Zinfandel, which adds a spicy note on the palate. Approachable now, Vampire Merlot is perfectly balanced for additional bottle aging.