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Flat front label of wine

Cupcake Vineyards Merlot 2009

Merlot from Central Coast, California
    13.5% ABV
    All Vintages
    Currently Unavailable $10.29
    Try the 2015 Vintage 9 99
    13 99
    10 28
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    13.5% ABV

    Winemaker Notes

    Moderated by the Pacific Ocean, the distinctive topography and climate of this sundrenched region yields some of California's best world-class wines. We select our Merlot from some of the finest vineyards on the Central Coast, to ensure that this wine is big and bold, with complex levels of fruit, spice, and chocolate.

    Critical Acclaim

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    Cupcake Vineyards

    Cupcake Vineyards

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    Cupcake Vineyards, Central Coast, California
    Video of winery
    At Cupcake Vineyards, our goal is to craft the richest, smoothest and most elegantly textured wines. To ensure this, we select our grapes from vineyards that are truly expressive of the varietals that we grow. Our Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot come from California’s sun-drenched Central Coast, where the distinctive topography and climate moderated by the Pacific Ocean yields some of California's best world-class wines. Our Sauvignon Blanc comes from the Marlborough valley of New Zealand, where the long days and cool climate allow the grapes to mature slowly over a longer period of time.

    Central Coast

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    The largest and perhaps most varied of California’s wine-growing regions, the Central Coast produces a good majority of the state's wine. This vast district stretches from San Francisco all the way to Santa Barbara along the coast, and reaches inland nearly all the way to the Central Valley.

    Encompassing an extremely diverse array of climates, soil types and wine styles, it contains many smaller sub-AVAs, including San Francisco Bay, Monterey, the Santa Cruz Mountains, Paso Robles, Edna Valley, Santa Ynez Valley and Santa Maria Valley.

    While the region could probably support almost any major grape varietiy, it is famous for a few. Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon and Zinfandel are among the major ones. The Central Coast is home to many of the state's small, artisanal wineries crafting unique, high-quality wines, as well as larger producers also making exceptional wines.

    An easy-going red variety with generous fruit and a supple texture, Merlot’s subtle tannins make it perfect for early drinking and allow it to pair with a wide range of foods. But the grape also has enough stuffing to make serious, world-renowned wines. One simply needs to look to Bordeaux to understand Merlot's status as a noble variety. On the region’s Right Bank, in St. Emilion and Pomerol, it dominates in blends with Cabernet Franc. On the Left Bank in the Medoc, it plays a supporting role to (and helps soften) Cabernet Sauvignon—in both cases resulting in some of the longest-lived and highest-quality wines in the world. They are often emulated elsewhere in Bordeaux-style blends, particularly in California’s Napa Valley, where Merlot also frequently shines on its own.

    In the Glass

    Merlot is known for its soft, silky texture and approachable flavors of ripe plum, red and black cherry and raspberry. In a cool climate, you may find earthier notes alongside dried herbs, tobacco and tar, while Merlot from warmer regions is generally more straightforward and fruit-focused.

    Perfect Pairings

    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 permit the possibilities of simple pizza or pasta with red sauce—overall, an extremely versatile food wine.

    Sommelier Secret

    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.

    NDF62373_2009 Item# 108044