2013 Mercer "Sharp Sisters" Horse Heaven Hills Red Blend

SKU #1259028 92 points Wine Spectator

 *Smart Buys* Broad and distinctive, with orange peel and exotic spice notes surrounding black cherry and licorice flavors, gliding easily against polished tannins on the long, expressive finish. Merlot, Syrah, Cabernet Sauvignon, Sangiovese and Petit Verdot. Drink now through 2021.  (3/2016)

Wine Enthusiast

 Merlot and Syrah make up the majority of this blend. Aromas of cherry, coffee, pencil lead and barrel spices are initially light and elusive while the plum and vanilla and flavors are much more generous.  (3/2016)

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Price: $19.99
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By: Andrew Stevens | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 7/11/2016 | Send Email
I love finding new blends and table wines to keep around the house and recommend to people, so it was exciting to taste this one from Horse Heaven Hills. Dark red cherry and purple plum notes are enhanced by the spice and chocolate layers in this wine. Although there is a lot of fruit here it is so nicely balanced by the licorice, tobacco, and clove notes that it almost tastes far more serious than the price tag would have you believe. This is a crowd pleasing, food friendly wine that would not be out of place at your next dinner party.

By: Bryan Brick | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 7/8/2016 | Send Email
Mercer first popped up my radar screen about five years ago when I toured their vast operation in the Horse Heaven Hills of Washington State while on a trade junket. I had tasted a few of their wines before and was impressed with their quality/value ratio but I had no idea how massive and historic their farming operation is. The Mercer family dates back to 1886 in what then would become Washington State. They were the first to plant grapes in the Horse Heaven Hills 1972 and that block became the famed Champoux Vineyard, they are one of the main growers for the Chateau St. Michelle empire, and have started quite an empire of their own with numerous labels under the Mercer moniker.. They also have one of the largest miniature carrot processing plants in the US and farm something like a few thousand acres total.
This Sharp Sisters blend which consists of 47% Merlot, 41% Syrah, 10% Cabernet Sauvignon, 1% Sangiovese and 1% Petit Verdot is a perfect example of that aforementioned quality/value ratio. As a somewhat unusual blend this is a crowd pleasing wine that is fully of ruddy, honest charm and plenty of fruit to spread around. Spiced cherry, 60% chocolate, black raspberry and café con leche combine on the dark and lightly spiced nose. Sappy and ripe on entry this opens to show fun red berry fruit laden with more serious black pepper, pipe tobacco and clove notes. This is a versatile and easy going wine that would be a great foil to BBQ fare, burgers or tomato based pasta sauces.

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Varietal:

Other Red Wines

Country:

United States

- When people consider domestic wine, they normally think about the state of California. The fine viticultural Region within California, including the Napa Valley, Sonoma, Santa Cruz Mountains, Mendocino and Santa Barbara, are capable of growing grapes of world-class quality. But there's plenty of fabulous wine coming from other states, too. Oregon, Washington and New York are also causing eyebrows (and glassware) to be raised around the world. Click for a list of bestselling items from the United States.
Sub-Region:

Washington

- Washington has become one of the most important wine producing states in the United States, and development continues to grow rapidly. In 1969, when California was exploding as a wine producer, Washington had only two wineries, but by 2000 that number had passed 100. Most of Washington's grape crop goes to uses other than wine. Merlot and Chardonnay have been the most successful in Washington. It's interesting to note that Washington's prime wine regions are located at 46° north, along the same latitude as the legendary French wine districts of Bordeaux and Burgundy. During the summer, Washington averages more than two hours more sunlight each day compared to California.
Alcohol Content (%): 14.1