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International Merlot Day 2020

Who hasn’t heard of Merlot? It can seem a bit humdrum, and a bit of a safe option, but with International Merlot Day on the horizon on Saturday 7th November, we’ve decided to take a fresh look at Merlot to see why it is so enduringly popular.

The joy of wine made from Merlot is that it can taste quite different depending on whereabouts in the world it’s grown, and whether it’s blended or used as a single varietal.

We have selected all the single varietal Merlot wines that we list, and trust something here may catch your eye, as there are a really wide range of styles, continents and price points to consider.

AUSTRALIA

2017 River Retreat Merlot
Deep red in colour showing aromas of dark cherry and plum with a touch of black olive; soft and mellow with flavours of plum and mulberry. A touch of oak and soft ripe tannins make this an easy drinking wine with flavour and length. 

2017 Trentham Estate Merlot   
Deep red in colour with lifted aromas of cherry and mulberry and a hint of mocha; flavours of sweet plum and spice with subtle savoury French oak. A medium- to full-bodied wine with velvety tannins, long and soft with a silky smooth finish.

2018 Mollydooker The Scooter Merlot
Brilliant ruby in colour with a bright cherry and violet nose, the 2018 Scooter is tantalising from the outset. The first sip fills the palate with intense red fruit like raspberries and fresh plum. As these vibrant flavours continue to develop on the palate, soft tannins complement notes of mocha and dried herbs, creating a unique Merlot.

CHILE

2019 Kalfu Molu Merlot 
Good typicality, the aromas of black cherry and raspberry stand out. Soft notes of vanilla, spices and dark chocolate come from the wood aging. Deep violet, red with ruby hues at the rim. Good volume, it has a balanced acidity and round tannins. Soft finish and elegant notes of vanilla and nuts. Best served at between 16°C and 17°C.

SOUTH AFRICA

2019 Indaba Merlot            
Carefully crafted in a fresh, pure style, this velvety Merlot delivers appealing aromas and bright, juicy flavours of cherry, dark berry and plum backed by subtle mocha and herbal nuances with a delicate minerality.

2018 Guardian Peak Merlot
The 2018 Guardian Peak Merlot displays fresh, ripe red fruit flavours of figs and plums supported by soft, discreet tannins which create a well-balanced, elegant Merlot with a round, juicy finish. This wine shows a wonderful structure for a wine best consumed at a young age.

2018 Rustenberg Merlot
Rich aromas of blackberries, cassis, eucalyptus and dark chocolate follow through to a smooth palate that is both balanced and well rounded with fine-grained tannins. This wine can be enjoyed now or will benefit from maturation in ideal cellar conditions.

2017 Glenelly Glass Collection Merlot      
The Glass Collection Merlot has a dark ruby red colour. It displays dark fruit – cherry and chocolate with hints of spicy plums. Tremendous concentration, richness and generous fruit on the palate combine with fine but well-structured and balanced tannins.

2017 Catherine Marshall Wines The Oreads Red (Merlot)
French clone Merlot exudes bright, fresh black plums. Plush purple fruit flavours are supported by a vibrant thread of fresh acidity from the cool climate fruit from the Elgin Valley. The wine is harmoniously balanced with opulently textured mid-core palate weight.

2017 Ernie Els Major Series Merlot 
All the hallmarks of a classic Merlot with ripe plums and earthy notes supported by a core of minerality and fleshed out with ripe strawberry, forest underfloor, hint of chocolate, and a deepening of dark black berry laced with a hint of caramel and oak spice. The savoury palate is coated in sweet attractive oak with distinct salty edge. Medium bodied, fresh yet serious with good line of acidity and clean to end. 6% Cabernet Franc.

2016 Catherine Marshall Wines Peter’s Vision Bordeaux Blend
Classic, restrained elegance with a mouth-filling fruit core, this is seamlessly poised with pronounced aromatics of fresh black plums, mulberries, violets and pencil shaving minerality. Tannins are supple and well-structured with fresh acidity to support an opulent mid palate for texture and balance. A blend of 57% Cabernet Franc, 43% Merlot.