Wente Vineyards Sandstone Merlot is a red wine made from grapes grown in the Livermore Valley. The Livermore Valley is an AVA (American Viticultural Area) located around the city of Livermore in the Tri-Valley region.
Wente Vineyards was founded by C. H. Wente, a first-generation immigrant from Germany, in 1883. Recognizing that the warm days, cool nights and gravelly soils of the Livermore Valley were ideal for growing grapes, he purchased 48 acres and planted vineyards. Continuing the 125+ years legacy, the winery is managed today by the Fourth Generation of the Wente family, Eric, Philip, Carolyn, and the Fifth Generation, Christine and Karl. Arroyo Seco is widely regarded as one of the best places in California to grow Chardonnay and Riva Ranch is the name of the Wente family’s vineyard in Arroyo Seco, where they have been growing Chardonnay since the 1960’s. In 1936 Wente were, in fact, the first California winery to produce a wine actually labeled as Chardonnay and today many of the great Chardonnay vineyards in California are planted with the Wente Clone.
The grapes for the Wente Vineyards Sandstone Merlot comes from a gently sloping formation of hills running along the southeastern corner of the historic Livermore Valley. Here, the warm days, cool nights, well-drained sandstone soils, and
incoming breezes from the San Francisco Bay make the Wente family’s hillside vineyard an ideal place to grow outstanding Merlot and Bordeaux grape varieties.
The 2016 Wente Vineyards Sandstone Merlot is actually a blend of 78% Merlot, 15% Petite Sirah and 7% Malbec. Varietals were fermented separately in upright stainless steel fermenters and pumped over 2-3 times daily. Wine was pressed on the skins after 7-12 days. Aged for 24 months in French, Eastern European and neutral oak barrels.
Wente Vineyards Sandstone Merlot is suitable for vegetarians and vegans.