Ancient Peaks Paso Robles Merlot 2019
The 2019 Merlot offers sleek aromas of plum, cherry and mocha with captivating hints of toasted oak. A bright, supple texture floods the palate with brambly flavors of blackberry, black cherry and pomegranate. Layered complexity is revealed with suggestions of cedar and cigar box, all converging on a luscious, lifted finish.
The rich, juicy qualities of the 2019 Merlot are an excellent match for baked pork tenderloin, crispy duck breast, mushroom risotto, and pan-seared sirloin with garlic butter.
Critical AcclaimAll Vintages
What we love about this big, brawny red (with 5% Petit Verdot) is its delivery from start to finish. Arresting scents of roasted coffee and dark plum lead to an entry that is silky, but with a twist: A core of minerality courtesy of ancient seabed soils—distinct from salty limestone or wet stone—has a grandness to it, revealing the power of the wine, buoyed by dark chocolate, dried lavender, and lush black fruit.
Savory aromas of wood fire, iodine and loamy earth give depth to the core of roasted blackberry on the nose of this bottling. An herbal array of marjoram, thyme and fennel frond arises on the sip, where rich and elegant flavors of dried dark berries meet an espresso accent. Editors Choice.
We are a family-owned winery specializing in estate-grown wines from Margarita Vineyard, the southernmost vineyard in the Paso Robles appellation on California’s Central Coast.
Just look at a map of Paso Robles wineries and at the very southern tip you will find our Vineyard. Here, amid the rugged Santa Lucia mountain range just 14 miles from the Pacific Ocean, Margarita Vineyard stands alone as the only vineyard in its vicinity, and thus the only vineyard to benefit from the extraordinary growing conditions of the area. Margarita Vineyard resides in the historic Santa Margarita Ranch, which was first planted to vines by Franciscan missionaries in 1774.
Ancient Peaks and Margarita Vineyard are owned by three longtime local winegrowing families—the Filipponis, Rossis and Wittstroms—who are actively involved in the daily operations of the vineyard and winery. Ancient Peaks wines are crafted under the guidance of Mike Sinor, a local winemaking veteran and one of the highest-rated winemakers on the Central Coast.
Ancient Peaks implements numerous sustainable viticultural practices to ensure natural quality in their wines while protecting the rich, native environment surrounding the Margarita Vineyard. Their practices have earned SIP (Sustainability in Practice) Certification for Margarita Vineyard, the leading standard for viticultural sustainability.
Composed of steep mountain slopes of ancient Salinas River origins at 900 to 1,400 feet in elevation, Santa Margarita Ranch is in the southern portion of the greater Paso Robles AVA.
With generous fruit and supple tannins, Merlot is made in a range of styles from everyday-drinking to world-renowned and age-worthy. Merlot is the dominant variety in the wines from Bordeaux’s Right Bank regions of St. Emilion and Pomerol, where it is often blended with Cabernet Franc to spectacular result. Merlot also frequently shines on its own, particularly in California’s Napa Valley. Somm Secret—As much as Miles derided the variety in the 2004 film, Sideways, his prized 1961 Château Cheval Blanc is actually a blend of Merlot and Cabernet Franc.