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A Mercer Trio

The good folks at Mercer Estates reached out to us a while ago to ask if we’d be interested in trying some of their recent offerings. It had been a while since we last tasted anything from this producer, and we have fond memories of a wine dinner centered around some of their wares back in 2014, so, of course, we replied to the affirmative. We thought it would be fun to check out the three wines they sent us with our good friends Shar Douglas and Ken Hebenstreit, and Shar offered to cook dinner, so we set a date and made our plans.

The white was poured with appetizers, and the two reds were paired with Shar’s excellent beef-centric repast. Our impressions are as follows.

2015 Mercer Estate Horse Heaven Hills Sauvignon Blanc, 12.5% alc., $15.00: Showing clean, medium color, and a little stingy on the nose; steely, and not exactly fruit forward, eliciting a descriptor of “salty” from Kim, and there is a certain subtle saline quality to it. Shar adds an impression of “a little bit of orange peel,” while I find under-ripe green apple, citrus and stony mineral. Medium bodied, with good acids and decent length, this doesn’t show a lot of varietal typicity; it could be mistaken for something else in a blind tasting, like Ugni Blanc, for instance. Perhaps surprisingly, it’s a bit more Old World in style than new, and that’s not a bad thing. A pretty good all-purpose white, in our not-so-humble opinions. Find this wine

2015 Mercer Estate Horse Heaven Hills Sharp Sisters Red Blend, 29% Cabernet Sauvignon, 27% Syrah, 18% Merlot, 14% Petite Verdot, 10% Grenache, 2% Carignane,14.8% alc., $25.00: Clean, dark color, with a bright red fruit nose kissed with a bit of oak; flavors echo, smooth, showing more oak and very New World in style (more than I care for in this case). Very soft structure, almost flabby, but full and round otherwise. Almost “generic” in character, without much to distinguish it, and quite overpriced for what’s in the bottle. Find this wine

2015 Mercer Estate Horse Heaven Hills Malbec, 78% Malbec, 22% Cabernet Sauvignon, 14.8% alc., $25.00 (sold out at the winery): Clean, dark color, with a nice black fruit nose graced with a generous dose of oak; more substantial and more structured than the Sharp Sisters Red Blend, but any varietal character is obscured by the New World winemaking. Ripe and round, with flavors reminiscent of blackberry and black plum, shaded with hints of chocolate and earth. The oak character has a more balanced place here than in the blend, and of the two reds, this one appeals to us much more. It pairs pretty well with the beef too, but I wouldn’t spend $25 on it. To be fair, those who gravitate more toward the “international” style might well view this price point more kindly, and it can be found for less using the following link. Find this wine

Reporting from Day-twah,







Related posts:

  1. A Delightful Mercer Estates Wine Dinner
  2. A California Trio
  3. An Alsatian Trio
  4. A Wine Guerrilla Trio
  5. A Tablas Creek Trio

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