Estate Merlot 2010

2011 Ridge Estate Merlot

Varietal Information
100% Merlot

12.9% alcohol by volume

92 points, Antonio Galloni, Vinous

Click below to watch winemaker Eric Baugher describe this wine


Ridge first made merlot in 1974 from the Point, the highest, most exposed block on the Monte Bello vineyard at an elevation of 2600’. Originally, we wanted to see if the varietal could match the quality of, and be included in, the Monte Bello. Once satisfied that it could, we planted more merlot over the years as space and resources allowed. From 1975 on, it has been a part of the Monte Bello whenever assemblage tastings so indicated. As the younger plantings matured, it became apparent that not only did merlot complement the Monte Bello, but also had the structure and complexity to merit a separate bottling.


Harvest Dates: 19 October - 2 November
Grapes: Average Brix 23.8˚
Fermentation: Destemmed/ whole berry. Natural primary and natural secondary (malolactic). Pressed at seven days.
Barrels: 100% air dried american oak; 41% new, 59% three and four years old.
Aging: Nineteen and a half months in barrel.

Growing Season

Rainfall: 36 inches (above average)
Bloom: Late June
Weather: Moderate summer and fall.


Estate-grown Monte Bello vineyard grapes, hand harvested. Destemmed whole-berries fermented on the native yeasts; full malolactic on the naturally occurring bacteria; 22mg/L calcium carbonate added to two fermentors; minimum effective sulfur (35 ppm initially, 83 ppm during of aging). Pad filtered at bottling. In keeping with our philosophy of minimal intervention, this is the sum of our actions.

Winemaker Tasting Notes

Aromas of dried cherry, rhubarb, olive, and sun-dried tomato. Cherry fruit on the entry, along with chaparral, dried herbs, and currant. Firm acid, polished tannins, and a refreshing finish.

Tasting Notes and Reviews
We apologize. There are presently no notes available for this wine.