Bonterra California Merlot 2017

Synopsis, Our Opinion: A sweet California red wine that was filled
with easy drinking Merlot characteristics.

Producer/Winery: Bonterra Vineyards; Hopland, California.

Grape Variety: Merlot with small amounts of Petite Sirah and Malbec.

Geographic Appellation,, Region, Country: Mendocino, County; North Coast, California.

Vintage: 2017

Price: $10.99 (with a 30% mixed 6-pack discount)

Purchased From: Ralph’s Grocery Store; Agoura Hills, California.

Paired With: Meat balls, mashed potatoes with Madeira1 gravy and green peas.


    Note: This year while in California we are reviewing a substantial number of wines sold in grocery stores. This review is one of them. To see all of our grocery store wine reviews look under the keyword “Grocery Store Wines”.

    Opened 45-minutes before drinking. Clear, ruby color with a lighter rim. Strong fresh raspberry, plum and cherry aromas that we’re a little oaky. Smooth and way beyond off-dry mouthfeel, solid medium body and a 200-grit texture. Juicy sweet fruit flavors that were clearly dominated by plum and cherry. Nice crispness to the acidity, VERY soft tannins that were just noticeable in the medium-length fruity finish that ended with just a tad of peppery spice. Well, aside from it being way to sweet it was not bad Merlot. OK with the dinner, but definitely not a sipping wine because of the sweetness. We called it a sweet California red wine that was filled with easy drinking Merlot characteristics.

    1. Vicky has been making Madeira sauce and gravy using a cooking Madeira we bought from the Caviste Wine Shop, in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, but like the wines we have been reviewing, we purchased a bottle of Paul Masson California Madeira in the grocery store here in Agoura Hills that only cost $3.99!!! It was cheap, but really lacking in flavor and almost any Marsala or sherry would would have been MUCH better!!!

Sebastian Donoso, Bonterra Vineyards Organic & Biodynamic Winemaker
Photo from Bonterra Vineyards.
Comments: Learn more about Bontera Vineyards and their wines. (Also check the “Bonterra Life” section of their website for a large number of very interesting and delicious looking recipes.

Alcohol Content: 14.1%

Closure: Reconstructed cork.

UPC Code: 0 82896 07779 3

Imported by: Not applicable.