Smoking Loon Merlot
Smoking Loon was established in 2000 on a very simple premise: good wine doesn't need to take itself so seriously. Originally named for Don Sebastiani's love of cigars and his father August's passion for water fowl (don't ask, long story), Smoking Loon offers an irreverent, tongue-in-cheek approach to enjoying wine.
Our wines are crafted for those with an appetite for adventure, those in touch with their inner loon, those who consider pretense simply unnecessary. Each vintage provides our winemakers the perfect opportunity to have a little fun and indulge their inner loon. They start by scouring the top wine regions of the world for the finest fruit. Then, they gently guide that fruit to its fullest potential, creating fruit-forward, well-balanced wines that offer a keen blend of approachability, quality and value.
Our 2012 Merlot offers classic, cool-climate herbaceous notes highlighted by aromas of blackberry and black cherry. This wine delivers flavors of cherry, currant, tart pomegranate and cranberry with a hint of toasted black walnut. American oak aging contributes vanilla through the finish. Enjoy this food friendly wine with pork tenderloin and rosemary roasted potatoes, grilled T-bone steak or your favorite pizza.
Chile's natural boundaries are clearly defined. At the north end is the Atacama Desert, the south end is defined by the Patagonian glaciers, the eastern border is marked by the great Andes Mountain Range, and to the west is the Pacific Ocean. Together these distinct barriers help to maintain healthy growing conditions, protecting vineyards from pests and disease.
Stretching nearly 250 miles from north to south, Valle Central of Chile is one of the largest wine regions in South America. In this region, vines thrive in uninterrupted sunshine. As night falls, cold air descends from the snow-covered peaks of the Andes. This temperature swing provides the environment wine grapes need to develop fresh fruit characteristics and crisp acidity. Chilean vineyards benefit from the abundant water for irrigation which flows from the eternal ice caps of the Andes.
Chile's unique geography and climate make for an ideal winegrowing region.
Chile's 2012 vintage was one of the driest and hottest on record. From north to south, heat was an unavoidable issue. These extreme conditions accelerated fruit maturation and moved harvest up three to four weeks earlier than usual. The yields were a bit larger than average, and the fruit quality was very good. 2012's concentrated grapes made for red wines with ripe fruit flavors and soft tannins, and white wines showing intense aromas and bright acidity on the palate.