Merlot is a dark blue-colored wine grape variety, that is used as both a blending grape and for varietal wines. Its softness and "fleshiness", combined with its earlier ripening, makes Merlot a popular grape for blending with the sterner, later-ripening Cabernet Sauvignon, which tends to be higher in tannin. Along with Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Malbec and Petit Verdot, Merlot is one of the primary grapes used in Bordeaux wine, and it is the most widely planted grape in the Bordeaux wine regions. While Merlot is made across the globe, there tends to be two main styles. The "International style" favored by many New World wine regions tends to emphasize late harvesting to gain physiological ripeness and produce inky, purple colored wines that are full in body with high alcohol and lush, velvety tannins with intense, plum and blackberry fruit. While this international style is practiced by many Bordeaux wine producers, the traditional "Bordeaux style" of Merlot involves harvesting Merlot earlier to maintain acidity and producing more medium-bodied wines with moderate alcohol levels that have fresh, red fruit flavors (raspberries, strawberries) and potentially leafy, vegetal notes.
- Item #: i_202520Bottle Size: 750mlA blend of 45% Cabernet Sauvignon, 31% Merlot, 10% Cabernet Franc, 9% Malbec, and 5% Petit Verdot, the 2016 Browne Family "Tribute" Red Blend explodes with aromas of mixed black fruits and toasty French oak with flavors of blackberry and black cherry. This full-bodied wine is perfectly balanced with big, integrated tannins and lingering notes of cinnamon, leather and tar on the finish.
- Item #: i_215470Bottle Size: 750mlA blend of 65% Merlot, 30% Cabernet Franc, and 5% Petit Verdot.
ANTONIO GALLONI 91-94 POINTS - "The 2016 Merlot Cuvee 37.2 may turn out to be even better than 2015. Dark and sumptuous in the glass, the 2016 exudes richness in all of its dimensions. The tannin needs to soften a bit more, but otherwise, the 2016 is shaping up to be fabulous."
- Item #: i_276160Bottle Size: 750mlThe latest wine from Roots Run Deep Winery, Educated Guess Napa Valley Merlot comes from top vineyards in Yountville and Oak Knoll. A significant portion of this wine was barrel fermented which adds great texture, complexity, and weight to the wine. Flavors of dark plum, wild berries, cassis and chocolate are well integrated with French oak. If you enjoy their Cabernet Sauvignon, you are going to love their Merlot!
- Item #: i_224280Bottle Size: 750MLWinery's Tasting Notes: "Produced entirely from grapes we cultivate at our Home Ranch in eastern Santa Ynez Valley, our Estate Grown Merlot is a sumptuous red wine boasting fragrant black cherry and dark plum aromas mingled with appealing vanilla, milk chocolate and light herbal scents. Juicy and succulent on the palate, the wine's concentrated dark cherry, plum and cassis flavors gain a zesty tea-leaf spice tone in the long, savory finish. Beautifully balanced, with supple tannins, our Merlot is delicious on release with poultry, duck, game and beef dishes, but it handsomely rewards an additional 3-4 years of bottle aging."
- Item #: i_227470Bottle Size: 750mlA blend of 43% Merlot, 34% Cabernet Sauvignon, 19% Malbec, and 4% Syrah, the 2016 Collusion opens with warm, sweet and inviting scents of blackberry jam, raspberry, forest floor, vanilla and cedar. The wine is very broad and open on the palate, with mingling flavors of fresh, ripe black cherry, restrained oak, vanilla and clove that continue well into the lingering finish. The luxurious mouthfeel provided by velvety, mature tannins assures that this wine will continue to improve in the bottle.
- Item #: i_245570Bottle Size: 750mlWine Advocate: 94Vinous Media: 92Jeb Dunnuck: 96 PointsJEB DUNNUCK 96 POINTS - "Starting with the 2016 Merlot Mt. Veeder, this brilliant wine is one of the top Merlots in the vintage. Purple-hued, fleshy, and beautifully full-bodied, it has terrific notes of black fruits, chocolate, and underbrush, fine yet building tannins, a stacked mid-palate, and a great finish. Even at $80, it's a screaming deal and has true Merlot opulence paired with considerable purity and elegance. It will keep for 15-20 years."
ROBERT PARKER's WINE ADVOCATE 94 POINTS - "Composed of 82% Merlot and 18% Malbec, the 2016 Merlot Mt. Veeder has a deep garnet-purple color and opens with sexy spiced plums, warm blueberries and potpourri scents with hints of fragrant earth, violets and dark chocolate. Full, rich, firm and oh-so-plush, it has a decadently fruited palate and a very long finish with some licorice hints coming through. 547 cases produced."
"The 2014 Merlot (100% Merlot aged in 90% new oak) displays chocolaty blueberry and blackberry fruit, hints of roasted coffee and unsmoked cigar tobacco, medium to full body, soft, silky tannins and impressive intensity. Drink it over the next 10-15 years."
ANTONIO GALLONI 93 POINTS - "The 2016 Merlot is a powerful, authoritative wine that conveys plenty of Mt. Veeder intensity, especially in its structure. Savory, deep and also quite tannic, the 2016 will benefit from a few years in bottle to fully come together. There is no shortage of depth or character here, that much is obvious. "
- Item #: i_247270Bottle Size: 750MLRob Mondavi, Jr. literally learned winemaking at the knees of his father Michael, grandfather Robert and uncle Tim. As a child, he also chased winemaker Tony Coltrin around Robert Mondavi Winery, where Tony began working in 1973. Since then, Rob and Tony have pursued parallel paths in Napa Valley, immersing themselves in the culture of wine and developing a love for grape-growing and winemaking. It is that shared passion that fuels their present-day partnership: creating the fine wines of Oberon, which honor Napa Valley and the Mondavi family's rich winemaking heritage.
As a third-generation winemaker and Napa Valley native, Rob Mondavi, Jr. has always understood that the region is uniquely suited for growing classic Bordeaux varieties. With the Oberon label - originally named for the eponymous king in Shakespeare's winsome comedy A Midsummer Night's Dream - he has created high-quality Napa Valley wines to be enjoyed every day.
Rob and fellow winemaker, Tony Coltrin, sourced grapes from throughout Napa Valley's finest appellations, including Rutherford, Oakville, Stags Leap, Atlas Peak and Wooden Valley. By blending fruit from Napa's classic and emerging appellations, they were able to create a wonderfully complex, well-rounded mouthful of wine with layered flavors of blueberry and chocolate.
- Item #: i_252160Bottle Size: 750MLThe Parcel 41 Merlot shines ruby red in the glass, with shimmering purple undertones. The nose is dark and alluring, with aromas of black currant, saddle leather, and milk chocolate, with a subtle and delicate floral note. The mouth is soft and substantial, with round, mouth-filling tannins layering smoothly with the densely packed flavors of chocolate-covered cherries, spicy black plum, and smoky espresso. This wine is a crowd pleaser and will pair well with a meal of pan roasted pork chops with thyme and currants, served with bacon-roasted Brussels sprouts and a wild rice pilaf.
- Item #: i_275820Bottle Size: 750MLThe 2016 vintage has layers of aromatics ranging from black cherry, plum, and raspberry to graham cracker, vanilla, butterscotch, and sweet hickory smoke. These flavors extend to the palate, which has a rich and silky entry with bright acidity and firm structure, resulting in great tension, balance, and persistence on the finish.
- Item #: i_222850Bottle Size: 750mlRabble Merlot is a throwback, delivering full bodied, luscious dark bruised berries and cassis. The rich berries give a tremendous amount of density on the palate that continues and lingers with long and decadent tannin. A throw back Merlot. Powerful and seductive in color and body. Dusty notes with rich fruit. Chalky tannins and composed sructure
- Item #: i_255240Bottle Size: 750MLIf Merlot has dropped out of favor, why the heck do we sell so much of this? It's because you can't stop a good-- make that great-- thing! Rombauer has earned an insatiable following for their reds and whites, but this new vintage of Merlot might be their best Merlot release ever! The grapes are pulled from several well-respected vineyards in Napa Valley's Carneros region, including the famed Sangiacomo Vineyard! Aged for 17 months in a French oak for that perfect balance of structure and opulence, this delicious Merlot is crafted from cool-climate grapes with a warm climate personality.
Aromas of fresh, ripe blueberries, ripe plum and black currant intertwine with notes of cedar, vanilla and pie crust. This medium-bodied wine is plush with flavors of plums, blueberries and figs upfront, leading to juicy red fruit on the midpalate. Delicious now, its depth and structure provide long cellaring potential.
- Item #: i_275220Bottle Size: 750mlThis vintage exhibits a beautiful, dark ruby color and enticing aromas of black cherry, bramble berries, cocoa, cedar, and rose petals. The palate is supple with generous red and black fruits accentuated by vanilla and spice, finishing with both supple fruit and polished tannins. While drinking well at release, it will improve considerably with bottle age, and should cellar well for up to ten years from vintage.
- Item #: i_259955Bottle Size: 750mlWine Advocate: 94This is the premiere release for an exciting new Bordeaux-style blend from Shafer Vineyards; one of the most prized wineries in all of the Napa Valley! TD-9 is a proprietary blend that celebrates a bold move. In 1973, in the space of a few months, John Shafer went from riding morning commuter trains in Chicago to teaching himself to drive a TD-9 tractor in his Napa Valley vineyard. He'd never grown grapes or made wine in his life. That spirit of risk-taking and adventure still guides Shafer today and inspired the creation of this new wine.
ROBERT PARKER'S WINE ADVOCATE 94 POINTS - "The 2016 Red Blend TD-9 is blended of 58% Merlot, 26% Cabernet Sauvignon and 16% Malbec. It has a very deep purple-black color and displays ready-for-biz, fragrant scents of warm plums, Black Forest cake and blueberry compote with touches of baking spices, bay leaves and potpourri. Full-bodied with a serious, firm frame of ripe, grainy tannins, the palate delivery loads of black fruit and spicy layers with bags of vivacity and panache."
ANTONIO GALLONI 93 POINTS - "The 2016 TD-9 is just as impressive from bottle as it was from barrel. Bright floral notes and a rush of red cherry/red plum fruit give energy to this pliant, super-expressive wine. The 2016 has firmed up a bit since it was bottled, so a few more months should do the trick. The blend is 58% Merlot, 26% Cabernet Sauvignon and 16% Malbec."
- Item #: i_265360Bottle Size: 750MLThis expressive Merlot showcases the varietal’s ability to excel in Napa Valley with its generous, juicy fruit flavors, intriguing baking spice notes and polished structure. It’s incredibly pleasurable and complex with cherry, cranberry, pomegranate, and plum with notes of caramel and cinnamon that persist through the long finish. The wine has depth and nuance with smooth tannins and a lush, lovely texture.