Mercy Wine Bar is a longtime favorite in the Dallas area, receiving accolades from local and national publications. The Addison hot spot also consistently wins Wine Spectator’s Award of Excellence, so it’s only fitting that the 10-year-old wine bar should have a vintage to call its own.
The 2011 Mercy Cuvee is being produced in a limited run by Domaine Saint Francois Xavier, a celebrated winemaker from the Rhone Valley region of southern France. According to Mercy owner Glen Agritelley, the wine is part of the winery’s production run, but this is the only location where it will be sold in Texas. Most of the remaining wine produced in that run is being sold outside of the U.S.
“You won’t be able to go to another restaurant and find this wine,” says Mercy Wine Bar owner Glen Agritelley.
“It’s not something you’ll find on our regular wine list; this is more of a specialty wine, and we mention it to special customers who we know appreciate wine,” he says. “We’ll also serve it to anyone who comes in and asks for it. It really is a fantastic wine, and we’ve had an incredible response to it.”
Mercy Cuvee is a blend of Merlot, Cabernet and Grenache, with a touch of Syrah. The complex wine is full-bodied, much like a Bordeaux, and has the layers of a typical old-world French wine.
“This is exciting for us because this is wine that is being made exclusively for Mercy,” Agritelley says. “We aren’t taking an existing wine and just putting a label on it; you won’t be able to go to another restaurant and find this wine. This is part of their production that they have set aside exclusively for us.”
It’s the first time Domaine Saint Francois Xavier has created a private-label wine for anyone in the U.S., and it is the direct result of a longtime friendship between the winery and Mercy general manager Vincent Havard.
“Vincent grew up in the region near there and knew them,” Agritelley says. “When they wanted to get distribution in the U.S., he was able to help them do that, and they wanted to do something special as a way of saying thank you.”
Agritelley says Mercy Cuvee was a popular gift for his regulars this holiday season, and they will receive a new shipment of the wine shortly after the first of the year. It is available tableside by the bottle for $60 or in Mercy’s retail store for $35.
But if you’re a oenophile who wants to try it for yourself, don’t wait too long.
“Once this production is done, that cuvee for Mercy will be gone,” Agritelley says. “Then we’ll wait for the 2012 vintage to be ready for bottling, but we don’t know yet how many cases of that they’ll make.”