The élevage of Mercy's wines is under the guidance of General Manager Mike Kohne. As Director of Winemaking, Mike understands that the Mercy wines are truly the result of the dynamic vines and innate 'spirit' of the Arroyo Seco's dried river channel. And, more, that as much as he might direct their style with vinification methods, he is merely a steward "trying not to mess anything up" or mask any of the brilliance of the fruit grown in this unique landscape.
Having worked with many of California's most prestigious vineyards, Mike draws on his nearly two decades of experiences to set the winemaking program. It is a process that starts by working hand-in-hand with the winegrowers to select specific clonal materials from particular portions of each vineyard site. Beyond that specific yeast strains and aging regimes are set for each varietal and are based on Mike's past winemaking experiences.
"Although there is still magic in winemaking, there are no longer any secrets. Everything is intentional. And our intention is to showcase the beauty of fruit grown in the Arroyo Seco region's dried river channel," states Mike. Ultimately the Mercy wines are the result of small-batch fermentation, lots of hands-on attention and gentle extraction techniques, as well as careful oversight throughout the aging process. In the end, they aspire to reflect a unique place and the distinct flavors of grapes grown in such a small segment of the Arroyo Seco region of Monterey County.