Meritage is our blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc and Merlot. At Ravines, we are able to produce this wine in a classic, balanced and age-worthy style. As most wine regions tend to produce higher alcohol, jammy fruit, low acid and oaky wines from this variety, the Finger Lakes present a refreshing alternative. While it requires taking risks in the vineyard, we are able to produce wines combining all of the assets of the Finger Lakes: intense fruit, nice acidity, moderate alcohol, soft texture and a broad palate of aromas.
2008 was a warm and sunny Vintage in the Finger Lakes with no drought stress allowing us to harvest these late ripening grapes mid to late October under perfect conditions. The absence of drought stress gave us exceptional intensity and purity of fruit aromas.
The grapes were all hand harvested and de-stemmed into open top fermenters. After starting as a whole berry fermentation, multiple daily punch-downs and pump-overs were conducted. The grapes were given three weeks of skin contact prior to pressing. At pressing, skins were hand bucketed out to leave behind most of the seeds and sediment and avoid sources of astringency. Malolactic fermentation took place in barrels for improved texture. The barrels used were 75 % French oak and 25 % Pennsylvania oak with 20 % new oak overall.