Good wine is like a hug in a glass. True to this statement, Merlot offers nothing but that at its best. Being a dark-colored wine grape variety, this fruit is used as a blending grape as well as for varietal wines. Merlot, which is a French word meaning little black bird is the second most popular red grape in America after Cabernet Sauvignon. Tracing its roots of origin in the beautiful Bordeaux wine region in France, Merlot has been described by many to have easy tannins, red fruits and a soft finish as its distinctive characters.
The smooth, fruity characteristics found in Merlot makes it the best selection among other seasoned wine lovers as well as a popular preliminary wine for new tasters.
What’s so distinct about The Merlot?
In regards to why Merlot is one of the ultimate wines to sample, here are some distinct features that make it to stand out as compared to Cabernet Sauvignon:
- Since the sugar levels are high, Merlot usually has an increased alcohol percentage. This therefore makes it sweeter than Cabernet Sauvignon.
- It also tends to ripen earlier than Cabernet Sauvignon.
- Once ripe, the Merlot grape has a tendency to lower levels of acidity than the Cabernet Sauvignon.
In addition to this, Merlot tends to pair well with chicken and other meats as well as lightly spiced dark meat. Due to it having medium tannin and it being not too acidic, it tends to pair well with most foods if not all.
The Napa Valley Winery
Located in the heart of Carlifornia, the beautiful Napa Valley offers a range of different varieties of blends and varietals when it comes to fine and elegant Merlot. In accordance to the standards set in place, for any wine to be considered as a varietal it must comprise of at least 70% of the grape it named after with the remaining 30% being acquired from a selection of blending wines such as the like Cabernet Franc, Malbec and Petit Verdot.
The Napa Valley has some of the finest wine makers when it comes to Merlot. They include Joseph Phelps, Beringer,The Cain Vineyard and many more.
Located in the Western Cape of South Africa, the town of Robertson also known as the valley of wine and roses, is the place to be for any lover of wine with a sophisticated palate. The Robertson Winery, with Jacques Roux as the winemaker, offers a blend of rich, dark red color with ripe, punchy, plum flavors, sweet black cherry and a velvet finish.
The Barboursville Vineyard in Virginia, is one of the most popular wineries in the region. The winery is normally opened every Monday to Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and on Sundays from 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. This classic Merlot is famous for its very gratifying palate and food pairing manners.
In summary, this rich blend of sophistication in a bottle is not only worth tasting, but also worth every single penny spent on it.
By: Stephanie Cara