Matanzas Creek Merlot Alexander Valley 2018

Deep ruby color; cherry, plum, blackberry, oak, vanilla on the nose; black cherry, plum, raspberry, blackberry, oak, caramel, leather, smoke on the palate.

Matanzas Creek Merlot Alexander Valley 2018

Dry; relaxed, dusty tannins with good balancing acidity (3.45 pH). Juicy, smooth, silky, lush. Medium-plus body. Grapes sourced 86% from Alexander Valley, 14% from Bennett Valley. The grapes cold soaked for five days, then fermented on the skins for 15 days. The wines from the blocks for this effort were all fermented and aged individually to evoke the terroir of each vineyard. Oak influence from 533 days in French oak, 32% new. Marcia Torres Forno was the winemaker. 13.8% ABV

Founded in 1977, Matanzas Creek brought life back to Bennett Valley winemaking. Although it had a wine history prior to Prohibition, Matanzas brought it back to life. The area is defined by three mountain peaks that surround it. Matanzas focused on creating site-expressive wines in this fecund region. All Matanzas Creak Winery estate vineyards are sustainably formed and certified under the California Sustainable Winegrowing Alliance.

Matanzas Creek winemaker Marcia Torres Forno

Matanzas Creek Merlot Alexander Valley 2018 has the soft mellowness you anticipate from quality merlot. Very good acidity, a real asset for food pairing. Inky color. Good on pop-and-pour; it becomes more mellow and approachable after extended exposure to air in the glass. Pair with lamb; grilled meats; roast beef; filet mignon; gourmet burgers; grilled or roast chicken; roast pork and pork loin; mushrooms; Swiss cheese, gruyere, parmesan, havarti, gouda, brie, camembert cheese. $25-30+

Matanzas Creek website, includes virtual tour

Matanzas Creek estate-grown lavender gardens (from virtual tour)
Matanzas Creek lavender prep and sales (from virtual tour)
Matanzas Creek vineyard (from virtual tour)
Matanzas Creek outdoor tasting (from virtual tour)