L'Ecole No. 41 2017 Merlot, Columbia Valley

L'Ecole No. 41 2017 Merlot, Columbia Valley

Item Number: 14638

UPC: 0-721354890030

Country: USA
Region: Washington
Sub Region: Columbia Valley
Appellation/AVA: Columbia Valley
Estate Grown Wine: No
Vintage: 2017
Grape(s): 81% Merlot / 14% Cabernet Franc / 3% Malbec/ 2% Petit Verdot
Type: Wine - Red
Bottle Size: 750 ml
Pack: 12
Closure: Cork
Alc by Vol(%): 14.5
Total Acidity: 6.3 g/L
pH: 3.66
Case Production: 4,870

L’Ecole No 41 is recognized as one of Washington State’s top producers of premium Merlot and this wine delivers with great structure, color and balanced acidity

Vintage Notes: The 2017 vintage was moderate in heat units and produced spectacular quality and balance normally associated with such seasonal conditions. A cool, wet spring delayed bud break until early April allowing the vines to fully recover from a hard prior winter. Bloom occurred in early June in line with the long-term average. July and early August were slightly warmer than normal suppressing berry growth and yields. Late September was cooler than normal and this slow fruit maturation, pushing most of grape harvest into October. A beautiful Indian summer brought in plentiful sunshine in October. Warm days, and cool night temperatures produced an ideal balance of flavor development, acid retention, and mineral notes in the majority of wines. A near-perfect vintage in the door.

Winemaking Notes: Each lot was hand harvested ripe and gently crushed into 1.5 and 5 ton stainless steel fermenters. Gentle handling of the fruit through hand punch downs and gravity assisted movements were utilized throughout the entire winemaking process. The wine was cleanly racked to 100% small oak barrels, 30% new, with four rackings over 18 months.

Tasting Notes: Layered with complex aromas of black cherry, rose petal, and plum, this full bodied, balanced Merlot shows layers of baking spices and cocoa with a seamless finish carried by fine-grained tannins.


  • Jeb Dunnuck
    Rating: 88 (4/15/2020)

    The value-priced 2017 Merlot Columbia Valley is a charmer, offering loads of red and black fruits as well as spicy, toasty, herbal nuances. Ripe, medium-bodied, and beautifully textured, it's a no-brainer purchase year in and year out. Drink this classy Merlot over the coming 5-7 years.
  • The Wine Advocate
    Rating: 88 (10/22/2020)

    Blended with 14% Cabernet Franc, 3% Malbec and 2% a Petit Verdot, the 2017 Columbia Valley Merlot is dark ruby colored at the core with a soft purple rim. Dense and chewy aromas of plum preserves and blackberry jus flutter out of the glass with a note of fresh rain on the sidewalk. Medium-bodied, the wine is tannic and feels like it’s been pushed too far and has lost some of its sincerity before ending with a gripping tannic finish and elevated alcohol expression.