Double Gold - SF Chronicle Wine Competition

"Highly Recommended"

    Yorkville Highlands, Mendocino County
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Merlot is perhaps the last grape that comes to mind when it comes to Mendocino County. The region sits at the northern extreme of California’s Wine Country. And its forested mountains and chilly, maritime climate is most often associated with cool-climate-loving grapes like Pinot Noir and Chardonnay.

Yes, Burgundian varietals are synonymous with Mendocino County. But Mendo should be just as famous for its notorious micro climates. And no one knows this better than the owners of Yorkville Cellars. The winery’s Rennie Vineyard sits in a sun-bathed section of Mendocino’s Yorkville Highlands AVA. Though high in elevation, the organically farmed vineyard produces beautiful Merlot—although each berry is tiny by Napa standards, producing a more concentrated, Bordeaux-styled wine that in warmer climes. This 2015 includes 15% Cabernet Franc, which adds violet aromatics and a winning minty character to the finished wine. Aging for 17 months in French oak lends a tiny touch of spice and cedar, culminating in one of our favorite domestic reds of the season. The press agrees, as this 2015 was also a Double Gold winner from the San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition and “Highly Recommended” from

·    Yorkville Cellars’ vineyards were first certified by California Certified Organic Farmers (CCOF) in 1986; among the earliest in the state. No synthetic pesticides, herbicides or chemical fertilizers have been used since!

·    Wine Spectator rated the 2015 vintage 90 points in Mendocino. The multi-year drought leading up to the 2015 harvest resulted in reduced grape yields and lovely, balanced wine throughout the region.

·    Mendocino’s Yorkville Highlands AVA is a newish appellation and one defined by extremes. First, most of the vineyards that make up Yorkville sit up at 1,000 to 2,200 feet in elevation. Second, the proximity of the ocean and its frigid nighttime winds means the temperature drops dramatically during the growing season.

·       Rennie Vineyard is located in Southern Mendocino County. Owned entirely by Yorkville Cellars, Rennie is planted to all six of the Bordeaux grapes.


From the winery:

Fruity floral aromas and flavors of spiced berries; a brawny, chewy merlot with bright fruit. (Secretly everyone's favorite.)

Winemaker Notes:

After a careful field selection and harvested on Oct 8th, grapes were gently crushed and put in open top fermenters, where they received three days of cold soak. The grapes were gently crushed, and cold soaked for three days. Fermentation was held at a constant 80°F for 10 days and then the wine was gently pressed and racked to French oak barrels for aging. After 18 months the wines were settled, fined, and gently filtered before bottling. Lovely now, or hold up to 3 to 7 years.



From the winery: 

We're unique in growing and producing all the main Bordeaux grapes each as a wine: Sauvignon Blanc, Semillon, Malbec, Cabernet Franc, Petit Verdot, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon & Carmenere from vineyards certified organic since 1986.


Pair with a roasted lamb dish with herb and garlic seasoning.