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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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  • Ornellaia Masseto 1997 Front Label
    Ornellaia Masseto 1997
    Merlot from Tuscany, Italy
    • JS98
    • V96
    • RP94
    5.0 6 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $919.97
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    919 97
    919 97
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  • Clos du Bois Winemaker Reserve Merlot 1997 Front Label
    Clos du Bois Winemaker Reserve Merlot 1997
    Merlot from California
    • RP90
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $39.99
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    49 99
    39 99
    Save $10.00 (20%)
  • Camelot Merlot 1997 Front Label
    Camelot Merlot 1997
    Merlot from Central Coast, California
      0.0 0 Ratings
      Currently Unavailable $14.99
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      14 99
      14 99
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    • Pride Mountain Vineyards Merlot 1997 Front Label
      Pride Mountain Vineyards Merlot 1997
      Merlot from North Coast, California
      • RP93
      • WS92
      0.0 0 Ratings
      Currently Unavailable $69.99
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      69 99
      69 99
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    • Barwang Regional Selection Coonawarra Merlot 1997
      Merlot from Coonawarra, South Australia, Australia
        0.0 0 Ratings
        Currently Unavailable $19.99
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        19 99
        19 99
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      • Dom. St. George Barrel Reserve Merlot 1997 Front Label
        Dom. St. George Barrel Reserve Merlot 1997
        Merlot from Sonoma County, California
          0.0 0 Ratings
          Currently Unavailable $15.99
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          15 99
          15 99
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        • Jacob's Creek Merlot 1997 Front Label
          Jacob's Creek Merlot 1997
          Merlot from Australia
            0.0 0 Ratings
            Currently Unavailable $11.99
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            12 99
            11 99
            Save $1.00 (8%)
          • Callaway Barrel Select Merlot 1997 Front Label
            Callaway Barrel Select Merlot 1997
            Merlot from California
              0.0 0 Ratings
              Currently Unavailable $15.99
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              15 99
              15 99
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            • Sartori Merlot 1997 Front Label
              Sartori Merlot 1997
              Merlot from Friuli-Venezia Giulia, Italy
                0.0 0 Ratings
                Currently Unavailable $10.99
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                10 99
                10 99
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              • Raymond Amberhill Merlot 1997 Front Label
                Raymond Amberhill Merlot 1997
                Merlot from Napa Valley, California
                  0.0 0 Ratings
                  Currently Unavailable $17.99
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                  17 99
                  17 99
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                • Kenwood Sonoma County Merlot 1997 Front Label
                  Kenwood Sonoma County Merlot 1997
                  Merlot from Sonoma County, California
                    0.0 0 Ratings
                    Currently Unavailable $21.99
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                    21 99
                    21 99
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                  • Bernardus Merlot 1997 Front Label
                    Bernardus Merlot 1997
                    Merlot from California
                      0.0 0 Ratings
                      Currently Unavailable $38.99
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                      38 99
                      38 99
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                    • Chalk Hill Merlot 1997
                      Merlot from Sonoma County, California
                        0.0 0 Ratings
                        Currently Unavailable $50.49
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                        56 49
                        50 49
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                      • Coldstream Hills Merlot 1997 Front Label
                        Coldstream Hills Merlot 1997
                        Merlot from Yarra Valley, Victoria, Australia
                          0.0 0 Ratings
                          Currently Unavailable $15.99
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                          15 99
                          15 99
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                        • Gundlach Bundschu Merlot 1997 Front Label
                          Gundlach Bundschu Merlot 1997
                          Merlot from Sonoma County, California
                            0.0 0 Ratings
                            Currently Unavailable $27.99
                            Try the 2016 Vintage 37 99
                            27 99
                            27 99
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                          • Hogue Merlot 1997
                            Merlot from Columbia Valley, Washington
                              0.0 0 Ratings
                              Currently Unavailable $20.99
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                              20 99
                              20 99
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                            • Sebastiani Sonoma Cask Merlot 1997 Front Label
                              Sebastiani Sonoma Cask Merlot 1997
                              Merlot from Sonoma County, California
                              • WS88
                              0.0 0 Ratings
                              Currently Unavailable $17.09
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                              18 99
                              17 09
                              Save $1.90 (10%)
                            • St. Francis Reserve Merlot 1997
                              Merlot from Sonoma County, California
                                0.0 0 Ratings
                                Currently Unavailable $34.99
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                                34 99
                                34 99
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                              • Arrowood Reserve Merlot 1997 Front Label
                                Arrowood Reserve Merlot 1997
                                Merlot from Sonoma County, California
                                • WS90
                                0.0 0 Ratings
                                Currently Unavailable $54.97
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                                54 97
                                54 97
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                              • Frescobaldi Lamaione 1997 Front Label
                                Frescobaldi Lamaione 1997
                                Merlot from Tuscany, Italy
                                • WS96
                                0.0 0 Ratings
                                Currently Unavailable $129.00
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                                129
                                129
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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
                                Currently Unavailable $64.99
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                                75
                                64 99
                                Save $10.01 (13%)
                              • Beringer Bancroft Ranch Merlot Private Reserve 1997 Front Label
                                Beringer Bancroft Ranch Merlot Private Reserve 1997
                                Merlot from Napa Valley, California
                                • RP92
                                0.0 0 Ratings
                                Currently Unavailable $64.97
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                                64 97
                                64 97
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                              • Kendall-Jackson Buckeye Vineyard Merlot 1997
                                Merlot from Sonoma County, California
                                  0.0 0 Ratings
                                  Currently Unavailable $29.99
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                                  29 99
                                  29 99
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                                • Matanzas Creek Sonoma County Merlot 1997  Front Label
                                  Matanzas Creek Sonoma County Merlot 1997
                                  Merlot from Sonoma County, California
                                    0.0 0 Ratings
                                    Currently Unavailable $49.97
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                                    49 97
                                    49 97
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                                  • Trapiche 1999 Estate Merlot 1997
                                    Merlot from Argentina
                                      0.0 0 Ratings
                                      Currently Unavailable $8.99
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                                      8 99
                                      8 99
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