And what an amazing thing to overflow with. One of our favorite noble grapes is celebrated today, in all its dark cherry, plummy tartness, mocha-spiced glory.
Typical tasting notes for Merlot sound like the makings of a delectable fruit tart, but it’s the liquid that floats in 50 million glass bottles around the world. Delicate tannins and a plush finish are the loveable aspects of Merlot. But there’s more to Merlot than being smooth; because its acidity is mild, as are its tannins, and because its fruit-forward sweetness is evident, it might also be what ushers millennials into wine country. It’s the perfect gap between the sweet Lambrusco young palates seek and the tannic, earthy reds of the sommelier’s taste.
Merlot is the highest planted grape variety in France… What’s not fancy about that? It’s also a bit temperamental. It’s a lot harder to grow than Cabernet, due to its thin skin. Being so sensitive to its environment has an upside though – it ripens two weeks earlier than Cab! During a wet harvest, one week can make or break it things. Merlot is also super sensitive to light, and Merlot-based wines often have an orange glow on the rim…. this rim is what differentiates it from Cabernet.
Here are 5 choices (all under $20) any Merlot lover must sip today:
With a nose of sweet dark fruit and dark chocolate, Fly By Merlot wins with its velvety smooth texture. It’s soft in the mouth with polished tannins, flavors of black plum, cocoa, anise and blackberry jam.
This Napa Merlot boasts aromas and flavors of mint, dark plum, cherry and oak balanced by tight tannins and nice acidity throughout. Makes an easy choice to sip with meatloaf or grilled flat iron steak with bleu cheese butter.
Opulent flavors of black cherry, blackberry and dusty chocolate are all underlined by toasty vanilla oak. The wines lush texture and smooth tannins go well with food or paired with a bubble bath
Aromatics of dried herbs, mocha and candied cherries. On the palate, plum skins, raspberries & Bing cherries intermix with silky/soft tannins.
Choose one of the above to try tonight or find a bottle here.