Bonterra Wines Reviewed - More is Better

Bonterra Wines

We were so pleased with the Bonterra Wines we had earlier, that when the opportunity to try three additional Bonterra wines, came along, we were delighted.

Click Here to go to my previous article.

We enjoyed the additional Bonterra wines at a house warming celebration and at some casual dinners.   These additional wines were Sauvignon Blanc, 2006 from Lake and Mendocino Counties, Zinfandel, 2005, Mendocino County and Merlot, Mendocino County 2004.

The screw cap feature of the Sauvignon Blanc, a new Bonterra offering, makes it easy to bring to friend’s home, to a picnic, or to purchase when traveling.   It is a wine with an intense aroma and flavors of kiwi, grapefruit, gooseberry and lemongrass. The wine is true to Bonterra’s philosophy of   “ farming organically creating rich soils and providing healthy vines an opportunity to deliver wonderfully flavored fruit”. Our group noticed the sweet bouquet of apple/pear and orange with the flavors of honeydew melon, kiwi and gooseberry, slightly sweet with a bit of pucker.  It was a wonderful accompaniment for the spicy foods we ate.

Sauvignon Blanc

The Zinfandel, 2005, Mendocino County presented aromas of raspberry and mountain blueberry and flavors of plum and blackberry.   Winemaker, Bob Blue comments that it is the “Zen of Zin”, an apt observation. Our group noted that this wine was smooth and light with a wide range of flavors.   The berry and plum flavors were pleasant with no bite and very flavorful. It was reminiscent of Pinot Noir, very fruity and complex.   It was a lovely complement to the spicy Indian foods that included samosa.


The Merlot, Mendocino County 2004, greatly enhanced a simple dinner at home and was great for a festive occasion. We agree with wine maker, Robert Blue’s description of this wine when he says, “Our organically grown Merlot benefits from the hospitable climate of Mendocino County in the development of perfectly ripe, flavorful grapes.   Barrel aging in hand-crafted French oak accentuates the distinctive cherry-berry flavors in the soft yet complex Merlot”.   The cherry-berry bouquet was very noticeable to the nose and the taste was perfect with our food.


Vineyard steward, David Koball says of this vineyard, “We honor the land by farming organically, creating rich soils providing healthy vines an opportunity to deliver wonderfully flavored fruit.   In every sip, you’ll taste our natural commitment and understand why we believe organic farming creates wines of great taste and excitement, among the very best you’ll experience”.

Merlot on the valley floor with Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah on the hillside at Bonterra Vineyard

This historic 378-acre vineyard, located in the Russian River benchlands of Mendocino County, is certified organic. The farming practices are "back to the future:" composting, cover crops, and natural cycles to create a soil that is rich and vital. From this fertile soil grow naturally healthy vines and intensely concentrated, flavorful grapes. Bonterra believes they have an environment of incredible diversity: soil, plants and animals together create a web of natural balance where all the elements thrive. “It is our passionate belief that organic viticulture is the right way, the best way to grow grapes’.


These wines are sold worldwide, although 70% of the wine is found on shelves in the United States.   Top export markets include the United Kingdom, Canada, Sweden, Japan and Ireland.

A great pair, Zinfandel and Sauvignon Blanc

We heartily recommend Bonterra wines, which we have found to be pleasant, satisfying and very well priced.


Photos: Leon Keer and Bonterra Winery


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