Started in the 1970’s, by longtime friends Burt Williams and Ed Selyem, the winery began it’s life as the first “garagistes” in Sonoma County. They bottled under the name of “Hacienda del Rio”, using grapes sourced from small vineyards in the Russian River Valley. Changing the name along the way, experimenting with new techniques and sourcing from the best vineyards in the region afforded the wines such acclaim that they were presold long before release, something that continues to this day.
Left bank styled Merlot, from a classed growth producer. This is nothing like what you have come to expect from California Merlot. There is the plum and blackberry you look for with Merlot, but the Chalk Hill soils impart intense stony minerality and the winemaking style has much more to do with elegance than power.