Keenan Merlot is generally composed of approximately sixty-five percent Keenan Estate Merlot with the remainder of the fruit harvested from the Napa Carneros region. After hand harvesting, the grapes are de-stemmed, then inoculated with Montrachet yeast. Fermentation ranges from eight to twelve days before pressing. Keenan Merlot is typically aged in thirty-three percent new French and American oak barrels for eighteen months. The resulting wine shows intense aromas of black cherry, blackberry, and cassis. Complex nuances of cocoa and coffee bean emerge as the wine opens up. This is a “big” Merlot that will age for many years to come.
Final blending is conducted before bottling, and seven to eight months of bottle aging is allowed before release.