Seven decent Merlots - Printable Version

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- Bucko - 03-19-2002 10:27 AM

1999 Beringer, Merlot, Napa Valley, California, $26. This dark ruby Merlot has firm yet rounded tannins. Loaded with plum, black cherry, coffee, vanilla and cedar notes on the nose and palate, the wine lingers, with a lovely berry aftertaste. 89/89.

2000 Bogle, Merlot, California, $9. Well-balanced, with ample cherry fruit, oak spice, easy going tannins, and red cherry and cedar aromas. Drink over the next couple of years. Good value. 86/90.

1999 Deerfield, Merlot, Russian River Vineyards, Russian River Valley, California, $35, 292 cases. Chocolate covered cherries, cedar, and tobacco leaf shake the senses to attention. Full and rich on the palate, the acidity is very defining and not for those looking for a soft, rounded wine. This will make a terrific BBQ wine. 90/89.

1999 Kenwood, Merlot, Jack London, Sonoma Valley, California, $30, 5,850 cases. Deeply colored with a melange of aromas from juicy black cherries to cedar. Very generous fruit on the palate, impeccable balance, with a pleasurable, lingering aftertaste. 90/90.

1998 Kenwood, Merlot, Massara, Sonoma Valley, California, $25, 1,865 cases. Black cherries, mint and sandalwood define the nose. Medium-bodied, with plums, black cherries and vanilla all singing in harmony. Drink over the next 2-3 years. 87/87.

1999 MacRostie, Merlot, Carneros, California, $26, 2,383 cases. Berries, berries and more berries highlight the nose, with added cigar box nuances. Elegant, balanced and lush. The wine unfolds with layers of red and blue fruit, spice and well-integrated oak, finishing long and crisp. Lovely. 91/91.

1999 Louis Martini, Merlot, Russian River Valley, California, $22, 1,000 cases. A host of aromas unfold, from black cherries, herbs, and mint to forest floor notes. Loads of cherry fruit, humidor flavors, spice and earthiness work in unison to provide a fun wine to enjoy with dinner. 87/88.

- winoweenie - 03-19-2002 12:47 PM

Delighted the 2-grand Bogle follows in the feetsteps of the 99. Kepp a box or so around for neighborhood gatherings.WW

- vinman - 03-20-2002 12:44 AM

Think I have forgotten what Merlot is susposed to taste like from recent Calif. offerings, with a few exceptions.

- Kcwhippet - 03-21-2002 08:30 AM

Looks like I should have gone further before posting the Merlot rec in the Italian folder. Anyway, I'd still recommend the Deerfield Ranch Ladi's Vineyard over their RRV Merlot, which we like very much also.