Merry Edwards Winery Russian River Valley Pinot Noir
Sonoma County, United States
March 16, 2023, Keith Beavers
“Merry Edwards has been making Pinot Noir in Sonoma for many years. She has been a beacon of quality and complexity and influenced many winemakers after her. This bottle is a perfect representation of how this winery rolls. It is deep, soft, and heavy while at the same time supple, elegant, and structured. The nose is heady and welcoming with earthy cherry notes. The palate is the gem here. It has a beautiful subtle weight with just the right amount of depth and acidity. The balance of this wine is wonderful. A classic Russian River Pinot Noir.”
February 2023, Jim Gordon
“This smooth, ripe and inviting wine wafts raspberry, strawberry and cherry aromas and offers all that fruit in the flavors as well. While full bodied and rich in texture, it also has an appetizing vein of good acidity that slices through the palate and finish.”
January 2023, Jonathan Cristaldi
“Winemaker Heidi von der Mehden is doing a terrific job keeping the standards high with this iconic label. ... It's an instant Russian River classic, showing terrific dark berry fruit, conifer, and sweet cedar aromas. There's plenty of grip and sappy tannins on entry with a coiled-up energy that reveals lovely mixed berry fruits, clove, and a tangy blood orange acidity. The long juicy finish is punctuated by brandied black cherries and flamed orange peel. Imminently refreshing.”
April 2022, James Suckling
“An alluring nose of woody spice, moss, suede and black cherry. Full-bodied with fine, slightly tight tannins. Earthy and savory on the palate with great intensity and depth. Nicely spiced. Give this a little more time to soften.”
Merry Edwards Winery was founded in 1997 and produces terroir-driven, single-vineyard wines from 80 acres of estate vineyards in the Russian River Valley. The winery is known for crafting Pinot Noirs of immense depth, elegant structure and exceptional longevity as well as its aromatic, barrel-aged Russian River Valley Sauvignon Blanc, which is among the most sought after made in California. A single-vineyard Chardonnay and Late Harvest Sauvignon Blanc round out the portfolio.
This Pinot Noir, which was blended from a variety of vineyards that escaped the fires unharmed, has been produced every vintage since 1997. It is crafted with an eye toward highlighting the beautiful fruit grown throughout the appellation. Once we create our vineyard-designated wines, each of which showcases a unique terroir, we pick from the remaining lots those that will make up the blend for this wine. Being able to selectively choose from this array of vineyards allows us to clearly illustrate the diversity of terroir in the Russian River Valley Appellation, and the stunning aromas and rich wines of depth that we are able to produce year after year.
Fully de-stemmed, berries are cold-soaked for an average of seven days. The 2020 vintage aged in 25 percent new French oak for ten months, allowing the wine time to rest on the lees, gaining depth and mouthfeel. This regime has led to a Pinot Noir of great balance, foretelling of a long life ahead.
Clones: Dijon 115, 667, 777; Pommard; UCD 37; Swan; Windsor Gardens.
This wine opens with a big, aromatic burst of sweet sassafras, baking spice, blackberries and stone fruits. In the mouth, it is full and robust with ripe fruit and round tannins. As the wine continues to open, it shows a true purity of fruit and becomes silkier on the palate. Juicy, sweet notes of black cherries, violets and sweet vanilla oak carry though in a long, pleasing finish.
Lamb is a classic protein to pair with the Russian River Valley Pinot Noir, and these herb-filled, juicy Mediterranean Lamb Burgers are no exception. What sets this recipe apart are the topping suggestions: spiced yogurt, olive tapenade, feta cheese, tomatoes, fresh spinach leaves, sautéed onions, mushrooms. You can do one, some or all of the toppings…the more, the messier!
Find this recipe at merryedwards.com.
Varietals: 100% Pinot Noir
Wine Alcohol: 14.5%
Bottling Date: August 2021
New Oak: 25% new French oak
Aging: Aged sur lie 10 months