Merlot: Articles on the Merlot Red Wine Grape Varietal

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2004 Lolonis Merlot - IntoWine TV Episode 14

Jessup Cellars

The Vibe: 

Just up the street from the French Laundry, in the quaint Napa town of Yountville, Jessup Cellars sits in a modest strip. The winery’s namesake, Mark Jessup, spent years as a winemaker for Robert Mondavi, and was the first winemaker of Opus One. Today, you can try his own Bordeaux blend (Table for Four), zinfandel, merlot and chardonnay in a cozy venue. In addition to his wines, gourmet olive oil and works by artist Edmund Ian Grant are available for sale in the tasting room.

Particularly good if you are seeking: 
  • Jessup wines
  • Small, private tastings

 

Not good for: 
  • Large groups/buses
  • Tours
  • Weddings
  • Picnics
Known For: 
Table for Four (Bordeaux Blend), Zin, Merlot, Chardonnay
Pictures: 

Locations

6740 Washington Street
Yountville, CA 94599
United States
38° 24' 21.6036" N, 122° 21' 59.6268" W
6740 Washington Street
Yountville, CA 94599
United States
38° 24' 21.6036" N, 122° 21' 59.6268" W
Phone Number: 
7079448523

Whitehall Lane Winery

The Vibe: 

Simple, spare and an ode to good cabernet, fans of the highly regarded Whitehall Lane wines will appreciate the down to earth experience offered in the modest tasting room along the St. Helena Highway. Founded in the late 1970s, the tasting room building is a throw back to the “modern” look of a few decades past (though a new building is currently under construction on the property), and serves up tastings of the estate’s esteemed Cabernet, as well as merlot, chardonnay and pinot.

Particularly good if you are seeking: 
  • Fans of Whitehall Lane Cab
  • Quiet, involved conversation w/ friendly tasting room staff
Not good for: 
  • Events
  • Large groups
  • Tours
  • Picnics
  • Shoppers
Known For: 
Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay, Merlot

Locations

1563 South St. Helena Highway
Saint Helena, CA 94574
United States
38° 30' 24.1452" N, 122° 28' 21.882" W
1563 South St. Helena Highway
Saint Helena, CA 94574
United States
38° 30' 24.1452" N, 122° 28' 21.882" W
Phone Number: 
7079639454

Markham Vineyards

The Vibe: 

Another historic property in the heart of Napa Valley, the roots of this winery date from the late 19th century. Current owner Bruce Markham came along in the late 1970s, producing his first vintage in 1978. In addition to traditional style wines, visitors to the tasting cellar can enjoy the rotating art installation and a selection of for-sale items.

Particularly good if you are seeking: 
  • Art buffs
  • Napa history buffs
  • Tours (by appt only)
  • Private events
  • Corporate events
Not good for: 
  • Tour busses
  • Weddings
  • Picnics
Known For: 
Reserve Merlot, Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon
Pictures: 
The Entrance to Markham
Markham Tasting Counter
Inside the tasting room
Markham Gallery
The Markham Gallery
Shopping at Markham Winery
The entrance to Markham Winery

Locations

2812 North St. Helena Highway
Saint Helena, CA 94574
United States
38° 30' 18.828" N, 122° 28' 13.2276" W
2812 North St. Helena Highway
Saint Helena, CA 94574
United States
38° 30' 18.828" N, 122° 28' 13.2276" W
Phone Number: 
7079635292

Rutherford Hill Winery

The Vibe: 

If you have the drive time and the picnic basket, and you’re looking for one of the best outdoor eating areas in Napa, head up to Rutherford Hill, where you can sit in one of three dedicated picnic grounds and gaze out at the valley below. This Terlato family winery also offers daily tours, which include a stroll through their extensive cave systems. You can even book the caves (or the picnic grounds) for your own (non-wedding) event.

Particularly good if you are seeking: 
  • Tours (including caves; offered daily)
  • Events
  • Catered/gourmet picnics and BBQs
  • Shoppers
  • View-enthusiasts
Not good for: 
  • Weddings
Known For: 
Merlot, Reserve Merlot
Pictures: 

Locations

200 Rutherford Hill Road
Rutherford, CA 94573
United States
38° 29' 51.81" N, 122° 24' 21.7764" W
200 Rutherford Hill Road
Rutherford, CA 94573
United States
38° 29' 51.81" N, 122° 24' 21.7764" W
Phone Number: 
7079631871

Rutherford Grove Winery

The Vibe: 

A medium sized, family owned and operated winery that sits on the site of a former eucalyptus grove, Rutherford Grove Winery and Vineyards offers visitors flights of its estate grown cabernet and merlot, as well as sangiovese and sauvignon blanc. The Pestoni family, who still own and run the business, are descended from some of Napa’s pioneer winemakers, and over the past several decades have pioneered their own innovative methods for disposing of grape waste (skins, seeds and stems, also known as pomace) and reusing the remnants of grape seeds (see the Napa Valley Grapeseed Oil Company, with which third generation Pestonis are currently involved). Visitors will enjoy grabbing a glass at the tasting counter and browsing the grounds, or sitting under a shady umbrella in the ample picnic area.

Particularly good if you are seeking: 
  • Napa history buffs
  • Picnics (for customers only)
  • Private events (dinners, tastings)

Not good for: 
  • Tours
  • Weddings
  • Shoppers
Known For: 
Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Sangiovese, Petite Sirah
Pictures: 

Locations

1673 St. Helena Highway
Rutherford, CA 94573
United States
38° 26' 51.0864" N, 122° 24' 44.6652" W
1673 St. Helena Highway
Rutherford, CA 94573
United States
38° 26' 51.0864" N, 122° 24' 44.6652" W
Phone Number: 
7079630544

Shafer Vineyards

The Vibe: 

At Shafer Vineyards all visits are by appointment only and are priced around $45 per person. The tastings are an informative and relaxed session around a family style dining table. The winery holds no more than 10 people in their tasting room at a time. Shafer Vineyards allows only guests that are 21 and over for visits. The Shafer Vineyards also operates on solar power, and prides itself on eco-friendly, sustainable farming.

Particularly good if you are seeking: 
  • Small Groups
  • Wine History & Knowledge Seekers
  • Great Views
Not good for: 
  • Families (Anyone Under 21)
  • Picnics
  • Weddings/large groups
  • Looking for food
Known For: 
Chardonnay and Merlot
Pictures: 
Shafer Vineyards

Location

6154 Silverado Trail
Napa, CA 94558
United States
38° 24' 55.8504" N, 122° 20' 11.4072" W
Phone Number: 
7079442877

Chateau Ste. Michelle Winemaker Bob Bertheau Talks Washington Wine

Chateau Ste. Michelle is one of the largest and most revered wineries in America. Located in Washington's Columbia Valley, Chateau Ste. Michelle is often -and mistakenly- overlooked by oenophiles searching for fine American wine. It isn't often that one gets to "talk shop" with the winemaker from a winery of the caliber of Chateau Ste. Michelle -they tend to be awfully busy people after all- but IntoWine.com had the good fortune of being able to do just that. What follows is our chat with Chateau Ste. Michelle Winemaker Bob Bertheau.

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