Pedroncelli Bench Vineyards Merlot 2008
Merlot from Sonoma County, California
Bouquet of black cherry, warm spice and plum. Flavors of black currant, freshly ground black pepper, and tart cherry highlight the taste. The subtle toasty oak complements the rich fruitiness in the mouth. Lush and full bodied, with medium tannins and a lasting finish. You can look forward to cellaring a bottle or two seeing how the wine will develop in 3-5 years or enjoy it for dinner tonight.
Wine Enthusiast - "A terrific Merlot, especially at this price. Impresses for its soft lushness and intricate flavors of berries, currants, cola, anise, pepper and sandalwood. A real bargain. Production was 2,500 cases. Drink soon."
Pedroncelli Winery has come a long way since 1927, when John Pedroncelli, Sr. purchased vineyards and a small winery in Sonoma County's Dry Creek Valley. Today, the vineyards are planted to premium grape varieties, the winery is filled with modern equipment, and wines bearing the Pedroncelli name grace tables from coast to coast. But two elements from 70 years ago remain unchanged: the exceptional place the Pedroncelli family grows grapes, and the family's dedication to making fine wines. View all Pedroncelli Winery Wines
About Sonoma CountyView a map of Sonoma County wineriesRelated Links:
Twice as large as Napa in size, Sonoma County only makes about a half the amount of wine as her northeasterly neighbor. But Sonoma, with her size, is able to vouch for more diversity within her borders, including sub-AVAs that are climatically varied. The atmosphere of Sonoma is decidedly laid back and down home country style. But in wines, they are keeping up with the Joneses, or Napa-ites if you will. Grape varieties are more varied here, from Pinot Noir and Zinfandel to Cabernet Sauvignon and Chardonnay.
Notable FactsThe largest sub-AVAs of Sonoma include Dry Creek Valley, Russian River Valley, Alexander Valley and Sonoma Valley. Each sub-AVA, with its own micro-climate, is unique in its grape varieties and styles of wine. Dry Creek makes a mean Zinfandel while Russian River produces stand up Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. The Alexander Valley makes some of the better Cabernet Sauvignons in the county and Sonoma Valley creates excellent wines from all the above varieties. Other grapes found throughout Sonoma include Sauvignon Blanc, Merlot and Syrah.
About CaliforniaIt's not rare to see a wine's country of origin listed as "California." A country into itself in the wine world, California makes enough varieties and styles to match many European wine countries. It produces a diverse range of wines that span the quality spectrum.
The most famous of the California wine regions is Napa Valley, and these wines are certainly outstanding – but it's not as broad and diverse as its larger neighbor, Sonoma County. Down south, Santa Barbara's Santa Maria Valley is well-known for its Rhône blends, as well as cool-climate varieties like Pinot and Chardonnay. The Central Coast, the largest California AVA, has many different microclimates that lead to a wide range of wines with many sub-AVAs.
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Alcohol By Volume GuideMost wine ranges from 10-16% alcohol by volume. Some varietals tend to have higher (for example Zinfandel and Cabernet Sauvignon) or lower alcohol levels (Pinot Noir and many white varietals), but there is always some variation from producer to producer. Some wine falls outside of this range, for instance Port weighs in closer to 20%, while Muscat and Riesling are usually a bit below 10%.
Wine Style Guide
Light & Fruity
- Red wines that are more fruit-forward and lighter in tannin and body.
Smooth & Supple
- Medium bodied reds that go down easy, with smooth tannins and supple fruit.
Earthy & Spicy
- Wines where earthy and/or spicy dominate the flavors – typically medium to full body.
Big & Bold
- Full bodied wines that have concentrated fruit and are higher in alcohol and/or tannins. Some need age.
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