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2011 Merlot

We proudly include Merlot in our small family of wines as a varietal that excels at our estate Margarita Vineyard. Here, ancient sea bed soils and pronounced marine conditions guide the fruit optimal maturity, allowing for the retention of true varietal character. The result is a wine that captures the essence of Merlot, with silky fruit flavors and a luscious texture.

“90 POINTS...”
-Rich Cook, Wine Review Online

-Jeb Dunnuck in Robert Parker's The Wine Advocate

-Wine Enthusiast

-Connoisseur's Guide to California Wine

FEATURED in “12 California Merlots for $20 or Less.”
-Wine Spectator

Vineyard & Soils

The 2011 Merlot comes from three blocks at Margarita Vineyard, specifically blocks 4, 5 and 7. situated along the slopes of an uplifted ancient sea bed. Block 7 yields dark, intensely flavored fruit. Block 4 produces lighter red fruit qualities with lively acidity, while Block 5 splits the difference with a blend of black and red fruit characteristics. Together, these blocks converge to create a Merlot with natural depth and nuance.


Our aim is to produce a pure expression of the Merlot varietal with a round, velvety structure that speaks to Margarita Vineyard. After destemming, the lots were cold soaked for 48 up to 72 hours prior to fermentation for a gentle extraction of initial color and flavor. After fermentation, the lots were aged for 17 months in a combination of French and American oak barrels.

Tasting Notes

The 2011 Merlot offers warm, toasty aromas of plum and dried cherry with notes of leather and cinnamon spice. A juicy texture unfolds with layered flavors of black cherry, blueberry and cassis, with trailing accents of black olive and mocha.

Cuisine Pairing

Recommended pairings include pork tenderloin, roasted lamb shoulder, crispy duck breast and grilled steak with olive and herb sauce.


Vineyard: Margarita Vineyard 100%
Varietal Composition: Merlot 100%
Aging Regimen: 17 months in French and American oak barrels
Cases Produced: 3,999

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