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Merlot

Learn about Merlot — taste profile, popular regions and more ...

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An easy-going red variety with generous fruit and a supple texture, Merlot can be made into a range of styles from everyday-drinking to world-renowned and age-worthy. Merlot is the dominant variety in the best wines from Bordeaux’s Right Bank regions of St. Emilion and Pomerol where it is blended with Cabernet Franc. On the Left Bank in the Medoc, it plays a supporting role to Cabernet Sauvignon—in both cases resulting in some of the longest-lived and highest-quality wines in the world. Merlot also frequently shines on its own, particularly from California’s Napa Valley.

Tasting Notes for Merlot

Merlot is a dry, red wine known for its soft, silky texture and approachable flavors of ripe plum, red and black cherry and raspberry. From cool climates, Merlot wines will express earthy and herbal notes, while Merlot from warmer regions is generally more straightforward and fruit-focused.

Perfect Food Pairings for Merlot

Lamb with Merlot is an ideal match—the sweetness of the meat picks up on the sweet fruit flavors of the wine to create a harmonious balance. Merlot’s gentle tannins allow for a hint of spice and its medium weight and bright acidity are a hit with pizza or pasta with red sauce—overall, an extremely versatile food wine.

Sommelier Secrets for Merlot

Since the release of the 2004 film Sideways, Merlot's repuation has taken a big hit, and more than a decade later has yet to fully recover, though it is on its way. What many viewers didn't realize was that as much as Miles derided the variety, the prized wine of his collection—a 1961 Château Cheval Blanc—is made from a blend of Merlot with Cabernet Franc.

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  • Fetzer Eagle Peak Merlot (375ML half-bottle) 1998
    Merlot from Central Coast, California
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      8 99
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    • Clos du Bois Merlot (half-bottle) 1998
      Merlot from Sonoma County, California
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      • Rutherford Hill Merlot (half-bottle) 1998 Front Label
        Rutherford Hill Merlot (half-bottle) 1998
        Merlot from Napa Valley, California
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        • Jekel Merlot (half-bottle) 1998
          Merlot from Central Coast, California
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          • Francis Ford Coppola Diamond Collection Merlot (375ML half-bottle) 1998
            Merlot from Central Coast, California
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            • Forest Glen Barrel Select Merlot (half-bottle) 1998
              Merlot from California
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                8 49
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              • Pine Ridge Crimson Creek Merlot (half-bottle) 1998
                Merlot from Napa Valley, California
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                  15 99
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                • Ironstone Merlot (half-bottle) 1998 Front Label
                  Ironstone Merlot (half-bottle) 1998
                  Merlot from California
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                    8 99
                    8 99
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                  • Clos Du Val Merlot (375ML half-bottle) 1998
                    Merlot from Napa Valley, California
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                      18 99
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                    • Sterling Merlot Estate Bottled (half-bottle) 1998
                      Merlot from Napa Valley, California
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                      • Merryvale Reserve Merlot (half-bottle) 1998 Front Label
                        Merryvale Reserve Merlot (half-bottle) 1998
                        Merlot from Napa Valley, California
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                        • Turnbull Merlot (half-bottle) 1998
                          Merlot from Napa Valley, California
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                          • Sterling Merlot (half-bottle) 1998 Front Label
                            Sterling Merlot (half-bottle) 1998
                            Merlot from Napa Valley, California
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