Washington Tasting Room Magazine

The Mercer family has been on the move in eastern Washington since the 1880s, where their pride of stewardship over their land has been evident in the family’s rich history as ranchers, farmers, and wine grape growers.

The family’s farm lands and vineyards are in the Horse Heaven Hills AVA, recognized as one of the state’s top viticultural regions, and practically synonymous with the Mercer name; patriarch Don Mercer was the first to pioneer wine grape growing here in 1972. Today, under the vision and guidance of Rob and Brenda Mercer, along with Rob’s brother, Will, the family continues to be a driving force in the wine industry.

Their diligent approach to sustainable farming and conscientious vineyard practices has won widespread acclaim. “We practice farming with balance,” explains Rob. “Every decision we make, every day of the year with regards to our agricultural practices incorporates balance.  There is always the possibility of adding too much or giving too little when nurturing a plant to produce its highest quality and most abundant fruit.  Balancing the care of the plant today with the care of the ecosystem that it thrives in from year to year always weighs heavily on our minds.”

The winery produces three tiered brands: Mercer Canyons, Mercer Estates, and Mercer Reserve. You can find Mercer wines at many popular retail outlets or even better, join the wine club named after pioneer Carma Mercer, or sample through their lineup at one of two tasting rooms:
Winery & Tasting Room: 3100 Lee Rd, Prosser, WA
Georgetown Tasting Room: 6235 Airport Way South, Seattle, WA

After Mercer’s vineyard manager, John Derrick, lost his best friend on Flight 93 that went down in a Pennsylvania field during the 9-11 terrorist attacks, he and Rob Mercer, a former Captain in the US Marine Corps (who was later re-appointed after the bombings of 9-11 to serve in Iraq), looked for a way to give back to the military community. They planted 911 vines on a premium one-acre plot they named Block 93 in remembrance. It is entirely devoted to charity—100% of the proceeds of the Cabernet bottled from these special vines benefit “everyday heroes” through charities such as Children of Fallen Patriots, Friends of Flight 95, and Semper Fi Fund. As of this writing, they have donated over $35,500 from this wine.

Led by dusty aromas of red fruit and tobacco, the seamless palate gushes with polished, rich and pure expressions of gorgeous ripe cherry, rose petal and hints of caramel lined with ultra-refined tannins. Showing precise balance and acute focus, the lush mouthfeel and pillowy structure extend the harmonious, lengthy finish.