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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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  • Pahlmeyer Merlot 2012 Front Label
    Pahlmeyer Merlot 2012
    Merlot from Napa Valley, California
    • JS97
    • WS93
    • RP91
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $89.97
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    89 97
    89 97
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  • Leonetti Merlot 2012 Front Label
    Leonetti Merlot 2012
    Merlot from Walla Walla Valley, Columbia Valley, Washington
    • WE94
    • RP94
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $89.97
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    89 97
    89 97
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  • Switchback Ridge Peterson Family Vineyard Merlot (375ml half bottle) 2012  Front Label
    Switchback Ridge Peterson Family Vineyard Merlot (375ml half bottle) 2012
    Merlot from Napa Valley, California
    • RP95
    • WS92
    • JS90
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $33.97
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    33 97
    33 97
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  • Switchback Ridge Peterson Family Vineyard Merlot 2012 Front Label
    Switchback Ridge Peterson Family Vineyard Merlot 2012
    Merlot from Napa Valley, California
    • RP95
    • WS92
    • JS90
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $69.97
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    69 97
    69 97
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  • Mt. Brave Merlot 2012 Front Label
    Mt. Brave Merlot 2012
    Merlot from Napa Valley, California
      0.0 0 Ratings
      Currently Unavailable $79.99
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      79 99
      79 99
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    • Grieve Family Winery Merlot 2012 Front Label
      Grieve Family Winery Merlot 2012
      Merlot from Napa Valley, California
      • WE93
      0.0 0 Ratings
      Currently Unavailable $58.99
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      90
      58 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 6 Ratings
      Currently Unavailable $46.99
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      46 99
      46 99
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    • Northstar Columbia Valley Merlot 2012 Front Label
      Northstar Columbia Valley Merlot 2012
      Merlot from Columbia Valley, Washington
      • WE91
      • RP91
      4.1 19 Ratings
      Currently Unavailable $28.69
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      41
      28 69
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    • Tinga Reserve Merlot 2012 Front Label
      Tinga Reserve Merlot 2012
      Merlot from Colchagua Valley, Rapel Valley, Chile
        0.0 0 Ratings
        Currently Unavailable $13.99
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        13 99
        13 99
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      • Buena Vista Sonoma Merlot 2012 Front Label
        Buena Vista Sonoma Merlot 2012
        Merlot from Carneros, California
          0.0 0 Ratings
          Currently Unavailable $16.99
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          16 99
          16 99
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        • Wine Spots Napa Valley Merlot 2012 Front Label
          Wine Spots Napa Valley Merlot 2012
          Merlot from Napa Valley, California
          • WW90
          3.6 10 Ratings
          Currently Unavailable $49.99
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          49 99
          49 99
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        • Clos du Bois Alexander Valley Reserve Merlot 2012 Front Label
          Clos du Bois Alexander Valley Reserve Merlot 2012
          Merlot from Alexander Valley, Sonoma County, California
            0.0 0 Ratings
            Currently Unavailable $26.99
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            26 99
            26 99
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          • BV Century Cellars Merlot 2012 Front Label
            BV Century Cellars Merlot 2012
            Merlot from California
              4.0 7 Ratings
              Currently Unavailable $11.99
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              11 99
              11 99
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            • Longboard DaKine Vineyard Merlot 2012 Front Label
              Longboard DaKine Vineyard Merlot 2012
              Merlot from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
                0.0 0 Ratings
                Currently Unavailable $29.99
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                29 99
                29 99
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              • Lava Cap Reserve Merlot 2012 Front Label
                Lava Cap Reserve Merlot 2012
                Merlot from El Dorado, Sierra Foothills, California
                  0.0 0 Ratings
                  Currently Unavailable $23.98
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                  23 98
                  23 98
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                • Irony Napa Valley Merlot 2012 Front Label
                  Irony Napa Valley Merlot 2012
                  Merlot from Napa Valley, California
                    0.0 0 Ratings
                    Currently Unavailable $21.99
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                    21 99
                    21 99
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                  • Rubissow Merlot 2012 Front Label
                    Rubissow Merlot 2012
                    Merlot from Mt. Veeder, Napa Valley, California
                      0.0 0 Ratings
                      Currently Unavailable $79.99
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                      79 99
                      79 99
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                    • Avignonesi Desiderio Merlot 2012 Front Label
                      Avignonesi Desiderio Merlot 2012
                      Merlot from Tuscany, Italy
                      • JS93
                      • WS91
                      0.0 0 Ratings
                      Currently Unavailable $56.99
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                      60
                      56 99
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                    • Tilia Merlot 2012 Front Label
                      Tilia Merlot 2012
                      Merlot from Mendoza, Argentina
                        0.0 0 Ratings
                        Currently Unavailable $11.99
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                        11 99
                        11 99
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                      • Waterbrook Collector's Series Merlot 2012 Front Label
                        Waterbrook Collector's Series Merlot 2012
                        Merlot from Columbia Valley, Washington
                          0.0 0 Ratings
                          Currently Unavailable $14.99
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                          14 99
                          14 99
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                        • Donati Family Vineyards Merlot 2012 Front Label
                          Donati Family Vineyards Merlot 2012
                          Merlot from Paicines, Central Coast, California
                            0.0 0 Ratings
                            Currently Unavailable $22.99
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                            22 99
                            22 99
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                          • Waterbrook Merlot 2012 Front Label
                            Waterbrook Merlot 2012
                            Merlot from Columbia Valley, Washington
                              0.0 0 Ratings
                              Currently Unavailable $19.99
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                              19 99
                              19 99
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                            • Torres Atrium 2012 Front Label
                              Torres Atrium 2012
                              Merlot from Spain
                                0.0 0 Ratings
                                Currently Unavailable $17.99
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                                17 99
                                17 99
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                              • Banrock Station Merlot 2012 Front Label
                                Banrock Station Merlot 2012
                                Merlot from Australia
                                  0.0 0 Ratings
                                  Currently Unavailable $8.99
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                                  8 99
                                  8 99
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                                • Rust en Vrede Merlot 2012 Front Label
                                  Rust en Vrede Merlot 2012
                                  Merlot from South Africa
                                    0.0 0 Ratings
                                    Currently Unavailable $26.99
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                                    26 99
                                    26 99
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