2017 Merlot

Pickberry Vineyard, Sonoma Mountain, CA

  • Producer

    Gail Wines

  • What we love

    Pickberry is a 30-acre vineyard on the northeast slope of Sonoma Mountain near Glen Ellen, California. The site is blessed with warm days and cool nights and sits on a rolling hillside plot on volcanic soil. Because volcanic soil holds little water, vines grown in it tend to be less vigorous and bear less fruit — meaning, the small berries that are produced have great complexity and flavor intensity. The 2017 Pickberry Merlot is outstanding. Aromas of blueberry, sage and menthol combine with juicy, ripe plum and bittersweet cocoa. 50 cases produced.


About this Wine

Founded by former sommelier turned estate manager Dan O'Brien and his brothers, Gail is focused on producing wines from select vineyards in Sonoma Valley. Esther Mobley, wine editor of the San Francisco Chronicle: “To my palate, the nine wines that comprise the Gail and Doris lineup are thrilling. Seeing Sonoma Valley through the lens of these wines feels like a shock: Suddenly, the landscape is more vibrant, more intensely colorful …”

Production is small, but their wines are memorable and authentic. Each bottle is hand-numbered, all in the name of their mother Gail.


Technical Data:

  • 100% Merlot
  • Alcohol: 14.1% | pH: 3.72 | Residual Sugar: 0.3 g/L
  • Winemaking: Fermented with native yeast and aged in neutral oak barrels for 14 months sur lees to help build volume and varietal character. It was bottled unfiltered.
  • Drink now through 2023

Dan O'Brien

Founder + Winemaker

Dan O’Brien is the founder and winemaker behind Gail, a wine label exploring the vineyards & varietals of Sonoma Valley.

The first thing to know about Gail Wines is that they represent the best of California's emerging garagiste producers. It isn't often that you can catch a producer before the word is out, but Gail represents one of these rare opportunities. Gail is on the cusp on blowing up, big.

Dan O'Brien has worked throughout the wine industry, first starting in high-end restaurants in the east coast, eventually moving to San Francisco to start the Grand Award winning wine program at Cavallo Point. From there he started the Cultivar wine label, was the estate director for Long Meadow Ranch & Larkmead Vineyards, started the Hunt & Harvest wine label, and now is dedicating all of his time and efforts into Gail.



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