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When many people think of organic foods and wine, they think they are eating or drinking something better for it. The truth is, its not always the case…but when it comes to Bonterra Organic Vineyards and their wines….it’s VERY true! The care, work and practices that go into Bonterra’s vineyards are remarkable and the rewards show in the juice. The rest is talent and hard work from winemakers. As they say, If you’ve ever tasted an heirloom tomato picked fresh off the vine; then you know not much is needed to embellish its beautiful taste. That pretty much sums up Bonterra’s approach to winemaking. Located in beautiful Mendocino County with hundreds of acres of ranch…Bonterra Organic Vineyards is a must visit when in the area and all of their wines are spectacular in taste and amazing in QPR. (Quality Price Ratio)

Bonterra Organic Vineyards 2011 Chardonnay is one of the finest chardonnays I’ve had the pleasure experiencing in the under $20 category of California wines. I had recently tasted a $45 chardonnay that was magnificent, from a nearby area (review forthcoming) and this $45 chardonnay would have a tough time standing any taller than Bonterra’s Chardonnay in a blind tasting. Bottom line, you would not know this is a $13.99 bottle of wine! The Bonterra 2011 Chardonnay is a crisp, clear lemon yellow color in the glass; much like a Sauvignon Blanc. Not a lot of golden color, like heavily oaked chardonnays. The nose is wonderful! Tropical fruit notes, pears and a little lemon. Swirl after swirl is intoxicating. The palate opens up to green apple and lemons; a little spice mid-way and a long, lemony finish. This wine has big acidity…very “Rhone Like” in style … not much oak or vanilla at all. The viscosity is my favorite part; full mouth feel like that of fully oaked chardonnay, without all the oak! The fruit shines, the acidity is bold and the mouth feel is full. Simply a remarkable chardonnay. FOUR BOTTLES easily rated on this wine.

Bonterra Organic Vineyards 2010 Merlot. I thought the Chardonnay couldn’t be topped…I was wrong. AMAZING California Merlot, especially at $15.99! (Miles would be in awe!) Cherry red with bright, clean edges and good clarity it shows well in the glass. Swirl a few times and you get a confirmation of the visual tickle…cherries and boysenberries with hints of earth and wood. Tasting it definitely confirms bing cherries bringing tartness and acidity…black plums and cranberries adding fruit tones and toasty oak and vanilla spice in the middle. The wine has an elegant style with nice structure and balance, soft tannins and a long finish. Very Pinot Noir like in taste… Merlot like in viscosity. Bonterra 2010 Merlot is a true gift to the varietals‘. A FOUR BOTTLE Rating without hesitation.

Bonterra wines are a requirement for you to put on your list of California wines to try. With a price point that clearly will not impact your pocket book and a taste that makes you feel like it did…there is a special quality in these wines that cannot be surpassed. Check them out at your local retailers or buy direct via their website at http://www.bonterra.com.

Farm to table has never rang truer than it does with Bonterra Organic Vineyards.


** Samples received courtesy of Bonterra Organic Vineyards and Thirsty Girl for participation of a live Twitter Tasting and review **