Winery: Wilson Creek Winery & Vineyards
Product/Varietal: 47% Cabernet Franc + 30% Malbec + 18% Cabernet Sauvignon + 5% Petit Verdot
AVA on Bottle: Temecula Valley
Winemaker: Gus Vizgirda
How They Describe It
This Meritage Wine (rhymes with heritage) was created to honor Rosie and Gerry Wilson, the Matriarch and Patriarch of our winery.
This dynamic blend really does reflect the impact that Rosie and Gerry have on their family and “extended family” alike.
Petit Verdot: (5%) Grace: Petit Verdot softens the blend. Gerry and Rosie have a very tender, kind and caring heart towards others. They give unselfishly.
Cabernet Sauvignon: (18%): Class: This “king of reds” adds substance and style. Gerry and Rosie combine personality with genuineness; strength with authenticity.
Cabernet Franc: (47%) Character: We blended this in to add character. Our parents have strong integrity, honesty, and candor. No pretense at all. What you see is what you get.
Malbec: (30%) Dependable: Malbec adds deep color, and ample tannin which makes for a great follow through. Gerry and Rosie are extremely faithful, solid, loyal and honest… no matter what.
We hope you enjoy this wine, as we (and many other now and to com) continue to enjoy the lasting impact that Rosie and Gerry have created and are creating. Here’s to honoring them!
How I Describe It
While the Wilson Creek 2017 Family Meritage is considered medium ruby by standard nomenclature, there’s something about the color reflective of this unique blend. Its color intensity is noticeably deep, likely because a third of the wine is Malbec. And there is noticeable garneting around the rim, due to aging, which also manifests on the nose and palate.
Rose, pine, and eucalyptus are a prominent sign of the dominant Cabernet Franc in the Wilson Creek 2017 Family Meritage blend. Fruity aromas of black currant, blackberry, cherry, and plum follow closely behind. Cabernets from Temecula are notorious for complementing dark and ripe fruit with vegetal and spice, and this wine does not disappoint — featuring notes of bell and white pepper. Fig and raisin indicate age and fruit ripeness at harvest. And clove, cedar, and nutmeg are notable from oak aging.
Apricot and nectarine spring from the wine. Tart green apple melds with honeysuckle and rose. And a hint of pineapple and mango accentuate more prominent tangerine aromas.
There’s a lot going on in this wine. A veritable salad of red and black fruit hit from the attack, including cherry, strawberry, black currant, cranberry, blackberry, and raspberry. Age and ripeness come next, with a combination of leather and cigar, fig, and raisin. Herbal eucalyptus and herbaceous asparagus contribute to the wine’s complexity, along with black pepper, flint, and fennel. Oak flavors are also prominent, showcasing nutmeg, black coffee, resin, and dash of vanilla.
This is a very dry wine. Alcohol is high at 14.4%, especially for Meritage varietals. In addition, medium acid blends well with smooth medium-plus tannins, giving the wine a medium-plus body. Flavor intensity is medium, and the finish is medium-plus.
Why is This Wine Special?
A lot of the wine we see, especially in liquor stores and supermarkets, are loaded with gimmicks. Winery owners pay big money for label art, for instance. It makes sense, though, because studies show the designs on the bottle impact sales in a huge way.
With the Wilson Creek 2017 Family Meritage, though, that’s simply not the case. We’ve written before about how Wilson Creek has played a major role in Temecula’s growth. But the Wilson family is actually devoted to one another, in real life, and the Bordeaux blends used really are a testament to their matriarch and patriarch. Simply put, what you see is what you get. And what you get tastes really nice.
In full disclosure, Wilson Creek Winery & Vineyards donated the bottle described here. Other than providing the wine itself, there was no exchange of anything which would have influenced or unfairly biased this review.
This is a wine fit for a black coffee drinker (no surprise, it’s in the tasting notes). Its dryness, slight bitterness, and spice are robust but not viscous.
When & How I Would Drink It
The deep, dark flavors in this wine practically make it aperitif-worthy. Grilled or roasted red meat is fairly essential when pairing with food, but if you’re a fan of amaros or vermouth, the Wilson Creek 2019 Family Meritage is a great after-dinner drink.
How to Get It
Order Online: https://shop.wilsoncreekwinery.com/prod-416803/2017-Meritage.html (as of 6/4/2020, there are not many cases left)
Bottle Price: $64.99 (currently on sale for $45.49)
Cases Produced: 480 cases
Have you tried the Wilson Creek 2017 Family Meritage? How did the tasting notes compare with your experience? Leave a comment below.