The volatile composition and sensory attributes of Merlot wines produced from vines under differing levels of water stress, with or without a foliar, kaolin-based particle film, were analyzed by stir bar sorptive extraction-gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (SBSE-GC-MS) and sensory evaluation. Vines were irrigated over consecutive vintages with 100, 70, or 35% of their estimated water requirements (ET(c)), or 35% until color change then 70% until harvest (35-70% ET(c)). Neither of the treatments consistently influenced ester concentrations or their relative amounts, though their concentrations varied from year to year. However, deficit irrigation had an effect on the concentration of terpene alcohols and norisoprenoids. Wines produced from vines under water deficit contained higher amounts of citronellol, nerol, geraniol, and β-damascenone, but linalool and β-ionone were not affected by deficit irrigation. Particle film did not affect volatile composition in the wine. Untrained panelists in 2007 and 2008 distinguished between wines from vines that received 100 or 35% ET(c) and between wines from vines that received 35 or 35-70% ET(c). Trained sensory panelists detected differences among wines for aroma, flavor, taste, and mouthfeel; however, significant interactive effects between particle film application and vine water status hindered interpretation of independent main effects.