1996 Pride Merlot

1996 Pride Merlot

The length of the ripening season contributed to the extraordinary character of the 1996 wines. The Merlot was harvested in mid-October at full fruit development and the Cabernet Sauvignon harvest extended into mid-November. Full ripe rich aromas and textures are married with the sweet spice of the finest French oak barrels. The fine balance and extraordinarily dark ruby hue assure that our Merlot will continue to develop in the bottle for years to come.

Pride Mountain Vineyards is located on the very top of Spring Mountain, above 2,000 feet in elevation, at the site of the historic Summit Ranch. The original winery building dating back to 1890 still stands. Currently 58 acres of vines produce grapes for our Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Chardonnay, Viognier and Petit Verdot.

Cellar and serve at 58º for maximum enjoyment.

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Appellation: Napa
Vintage: 1996
Harvest: October 1996
Fermentation: Stainless Steel
Cooperage: Select French Oak
Blend: 95% Merlot
5% Cabernet Sauvignon
Alcohol: 13.8%
Bottling: April 1998
Production: 4679 cases
Release Date: May 1998
Release Price:


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  • Connoisseurs' Guide: December 1998 - Rating: 3 Stars

    Yet another exceptional effort from our "WINERY OF THE YEAR", this deep, handsome and very well-balanced Merlot is loaded with bright young fruit and makes expert use of sweet, slightly creamy oak as a complement to its essential message of rich, ripe cherries. Slightly supple, if still somewhat tannic, the wine avoids any tendency to softness and, instead, shows the kind of firmness and strength of structure that guarantee longevity and very positive development.

    Note: WINERY OF THE YEAR is PRIDE MOUNTAIN VINEYARDS set at the top of Spring Mountain. From its dramatically sculpted terraces, Pride Mountain has burst to the top of winemaking ranks with three-star Merlot and Cabernet Reserves, a three-star Merlot, a three star Cabernet and a two-star Cabernet. The winery?s intent to increase output to 18,000 cases when all of its vineyards are in full production is good news for wine lovers.

  • Connoisseurs' Guide: January 1999 - Rating: 3 Stars

    BEST BUYS IN THE MARKET", Our pick of the bunch among Merlot values is quite simply one of the best Merlots tasted in the whole of last year and shows why its producer was named CGCW's "WINERY OF THE YEAR". The PRIDE MOUNTAIN 1996 is as long on fruit as it is impeccably balanced, and for all of its immediate beauty, it will age famously.