Megan Bell, owner and winemaker of Margins Wine, has made a delicious red wine blend called Rugged Heart. She sources grapes from vineyards on the “margins” and always describes how each wine came about.
In 2017, she came across vineyards being farmed by Larry Makjavich, which eventually led to forming a team with him, and she has since bought all of his fruit.
“No one had ever made wines commercially from this site before,” Bell says.
The 2021 Santa Cruz Mountains Rugged Heart ($30) is an intricate blend of 57% Cabernet Franc and 43% Merlot with flavorful notes of roses, red fruit and earth.
Bell discovered the phrase “rugged heart” when browsing an 1880s guide to Santa Cruz County. “It suggested that the extreme landscape and diverse coastal and mountain microclimates were well suited only to travelers with “rugged hearts,” Bell says. She loved the name and chose it for this wine.
Right now, Bell is doing special packs of three or four bottles. marginswine.com
My husband and I often stop for dinner at Sea Root, a splendid restaurant in the Hyatt Regency Monterey Hotel & Spa. The food is always marvelous, and the dining room has an expansive view of the hotel’s golf course. Sparkling Rosé from Folktale Winery in Carmel Valley was a delicious pairing with my entrée of superbly prepared salmon with an unusual and delicious side of black beans. My husband’s grilled flat-iron steak met his expectations!
Sea Root at Hyatt Regency Monterey Hotel and Spa, 1 Old Golf Course Road, Monterey, 831-372-1234.