Merry Edwards, Russian River Valley (Sonoma County, California) Pinot Noir Bucher Vineyard 2017

($63):  The Bucher Vineyard Pinot Noir, a new addition to the Merry Edwards portfolio, could be considered Heidi von der Mehden’s “baby.”  Heidi, who took over as winemaker with the 2018 vintage, had been working with Merry Edwards since 2015 and was given the responsibility for making the 2016 Bucher Pinot Noir, their first.  The 2017, a large-framed Pinot Noir, combines ripe black fruit notes with fabulous acidity that keeps it fresh and lively.  Not overdone, it carries its 14.5 percent stated-alcohol seamlessly.  Underneath the fruit lies an intriguing and balancing mineral-like tarriness.   A delightful hint of bitterness in the finish reinforces that this wine, as juicy as it is, is not solely about fruit. Refined tannins made it hard to resist now.  This wine bodes well for von der Mehden’s talents.
93 Michael Apstein Dec 8, 2020