Monday, March 8, 2010

Merlot

Merlot is a black grape similar to Cabernet Sauvignon. The differences are that merlot has less of everything: aroma, intensity, tanning and acidity, except for body and alcohol of which merlot has a lot more. It also offers slightly different flavour profile with riper black fruits such as black plum and black berry. Super ripe merlot offers chocolate and fruitcake flavours. Under ripe merlot is a lot more drinkable than under ripe cabernet sauvignon, showing red fruit flavour such as strawberry, red berry, plum. In fact, most elegant styles of merlot is grown in moderate and cooler climates.

For new drinkers, merlot is best described as "cabernet sauvignon without pain", because it is smooth and not astringent. The grape is the second most planted dark skinned grape in the world, right behind cabernet sauvignon. While pure merlot is very popular in America, merlot is better associated its blend with cabernet sauvignon: bordeaux <- which I will talk very extensively about later.

Merlot is widely planted in all types of different climate. Merlot is good for pairing with more delicate red meat, such as veal, meat loaf, lean roasts and ribs, stews, or roasted or some grilled white meat such as duck, chicken, turkey.


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