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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 reputation has taken a big hit, and more than a decade later has yet to fully recover, though it is on its way. What most 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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  • Planeta Sito dell’Ulmo Merlot 2011 Front Label
    Planeta Sito dell’Ulmo Merlot 2011
    Merlot from Sicily, Italy
    • WE90
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  • Chateau St. Jean Merlot 1999 Front Label
    Chateau St. Jean Merlot 1999
    Merlot from Sonoma County, California
    • WE92
    0.0 0 Ratings
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    Currently Unavailable $26.99
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    29 99
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  • Pride Mountain Vineyards Merlot 1998  Front Label
    Pride Mountain Vineyards Merlot 1998
    Merlot from North Coast, California
    • WS93
    • WE93
    0.0 0 Ratings
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    Currently Unavailable $40.94
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    45 49
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  • Pride Mountain Vineyards Vintner Select Merlot 2009 Front Label
    Pride Mountain Vineyards Vintner Select Merlot 2009
    Merlot from Sonoma County, California
    • RP95
    • WS92
    • WE90
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Price per bottle
    Currently Unavailable $139.97
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    139 97
    139 97
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  • Leonetti Merlot 2008 Front Label
    Leonetti Merlot 2008
    Merlot from Walla Walla Valley, Columbia Valley, Washington
    • WE96
    • D95
    • W&S92
    0.0 0 Ratings
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    Currently Unavailable $85.00
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  • Leonetti Merlot 2004 Front Label
    Leonetti Merlot 2004
    Merlot from Walla Walla Valley, Columbia Valley, Washington
    • RP94
    • WE92
    • WS91
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Price per bottle
    Currently Unavailable $109.97
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    109 97
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  • Pride Mountain Vineyards Merlot (1.5 Liter Magnum) 2004 Front Label
    Pride Mountain Vineyards Merlot (1.5 Liter Magnum) 2004
    Merlot from North Coast, California
    • WS94
    • WE90
    0.0 0 Ratings
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    Currently Unavailable $179.97
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    179 97
    179 97
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  • Mt. Brave Merlot 2009 Front Label
    Mt. Brave Merlot 2009
    Merlot from Mt. Veeder, Napa Valley, California
    • WE93
    • RP92
    • W&S92
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Price per bottle
    Currently Unavailable $74.99
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    74 99
    74 99
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  • Duckhorn Napa Valley Merlot 2004  Front Bottle Shot
    Duckhorn Napa Valley Merlot 2004
    Merlot from Napa Valley, California
    • WE90
    0.0 0 Ratings
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    Currently Unavailable $54.99
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    54 99
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  • Joseph Phelps Napa Valley Merlot 2002 Front Label
    Joseph Phelps Napa Valley Merlot 2002
    Merlot from Napa Valley, California
    • WE92
    • WS91
    4.0 5 Ratings
    Price per bottle
    Currently Unavailable $46.99
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    46 99
    46 99
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  • Beringer Howell Mountain Bancroft Ranch Merlot 1996 Front Label
    Beringer Howell Mountain Bancroft Ranch Merlot 1996
    Merlot from Howell Mountain, Napa Valley, California
    • WE92
    0.0 0 Ratings
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    Currently Unavailable $91.99
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    129 99
    91 99
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  • Ornellaia Masseto 1996 Front Label
    Ornellaia Masseto 1996
    Merlot from Tuscany, Italy
    • WE93
    • WS92
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Price per bottle
    Currently Unavailable $797.97
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    797 97
    797 97
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  • Leonetti Merlot 2010 Front Label
    Leonetti Merlot 2010
    Merlot from Walla Walla Valley, Columbia Valley, Washington
    • WE95
    • WS93
    • RP93
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Price per bottle
    Currently Unavailable $85.00
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    85
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  • Petrolo Galatrona 2007 Front Label
    Petrolo Galatrona 2007
    Merlot from Tuscany, Italy
    • WS98
    • WE98
    • JS98
    • RP95
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Price per bottle
    Currently Unavailable $139.97
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    150
    139 97
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  • Beringer Howell Mtn. Bancroft Ranch Merlot (loose capsules) 1997 Front Label
    Beringer Howell Mtn. Bancroft Ranch Merlot (loose capsules) 1997
    Merlot from Howell Mountain, Napa Valley, California
    • WS93
    • RP92
    • WE91
    0.0 0 Ratings
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    Currently Unavailable $99.99
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    110 99
    99 99
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  • Petrolo Galatrona 2003 Front Label
    Petrolo Galatrona 2003
    Merlot from Tuscany, Italy
    • WS96
    • RP91
    • WE90
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Price per bottle
    Currently Unavailable $89.97
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    89 97
    89 97
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  • Nickel & Nickel Harris Vineyard Merlot 2000  Front Label
    Nickel & Nickel Harris Vineyard Merlot 2000
    Merlot from Oakville, Napa Valley, California
    • WE93
    0.0 0 Ratings
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    Currently Unavailable $39.97
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    39 97
    39 97
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  • Le Macchiole Messorio 2007 Front Label
    Le Macchiole Messorio 2007
    Merlot from Tuscany, Italy
    • WE99
    • WS93
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Price per bottle
    Currently Unavailable $149.00
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    319
    149
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  • Paloma Spring Mountain Merlot 2002 Front Label
    Paloma Spring Mountain Merlot 2002
    Merlot from Napa Valley, California
    • WE94
    • WS93
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Price per bottle
    Currently Unavailable $79.97
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    79 97
    79 97
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  • Pride Mountain Vineyards Merlot 2000
    Merlot from North Coast, California
    • WE92
    • WS91
    0.0 0 Ratings
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    Currently Unavailable $49.97
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    49 97
    49 97
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  • Freemark Abbey Napa Valley Merlot 2011 Front Label
    Freemark Abbey Napa Valley Merlot 2011
    Merlot from Napa Valley, California
    • WE90
    • D90
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    Currently Unavailable $27.99
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    27 99
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  • Grgich Hills Estate Merlot 2012 Front Label
    Grgich Hills Estate Merlot 2012
    Merlot from Napa Valley, California
    • WE90
    4.7 9 Ratings
    Price per bottle
    Currently Unavailable $43.99
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    43 99
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  • Keenan Napa Valley Merlot 2007 Front Label
    Keenan Napa Valley Merlot 2007
    Merlot from Napa Valley, California
    • WE92
    0.0 0 Ratings
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    Currently Unavailable $37.97
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    37 97
    37 97
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  • Duckhorn Three Palms Merlot 1996  Front Label
    Duckhorn Three Palms Merlot 1996
    Merlot from Calistoga, Napa Valley, California
    • WE91
    • WS90
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Price per bottle
    Currently Unavailable $109.97
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    109 97
    109 97
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  • Pride Mountain Vineyards Merlot 2008 Front Label
    Pride Mountain Vineyards Merlot 2008
    Merlot from North Coast, California
    • WE93
    • RP90
    0.0 0 Ratings
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    Currently Unavailable $49.97
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    60
    49 97
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