Our selections of the best Merlots
Merlot grapes have their origin in the south of France and are one of the most widespread throughout the world. The wines produced with this variety have intense and dark colors, with little sugar and a slightly acid taste, thanks to their high concentration of resveratrol. This is a highly appreciated wine for its potential and quality. In this article we select some of the best Merlots so that you can choose the one you like the most.
1. Viñas del Vero Tinto Cabernet Merlot DO Somontano
Viñas del Vero could be the best brand of Merlots, thanks to its harvesting process that begins with the collection of the Merlot grape in the first week of September and, a month later, joins that of the Cabernet Sauvignon.
In both cases, they are harvested at the optimum moment of maturation, destemmed and refrigerated to start the maceration before the alcoholic fermentation is activated.
The result of this unique process is a wine with a very intense and dark color, with a violet rim. In the glass it offers clean and strong aromas, among which black fruits and sweet vanilla stand out. Finally, in the mouth it has a smooth start, which gives way to a long, round and pleasant drink, leaving persistent and slightly acid flavors.
This Merlot wine is very versatile, making it a good option to combine with all kinds of meats, even grilled preparations or sauces.
2. Enate Cabernet Sauvignon Merlot Wine
Enate is a modern winery, but one that mixes traditional maceration techniques with technological and oenological advances to produce wines with their own personality.
In this sense, this could be one of the best Merlots of 2022, thanks to the nuances provided by the mixture of Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot grapes collected in its DO Somontano vineyards.
This wine, from the 2017 vintage, has a dark cherry color in its middle layer, with a slightly violet rim. In the glass, it opens with suggestive and complex aromas, in which the fruits of the forest such as currant are mixed with elegant floral nuances of violets, which end in a spicy finish.
On the palate it is round and soft, with light tannins, roasted final notes, reminiscent of cocoa, as well as a slightly acid finish.
It is a wine to pair with all kinds of roasts, meats, cheeses and even fish with sauce.
3. Collines Antiques Red wine Merlot PGI Pays d’Oc vintage 2018
Collines Antiques wine might be the best Merlot in the South of France. It has the personality and characteristics of typical wines from the south of France, with the essence of Roussillon and Languedoc wines.
Being a region that has traditionally produced highly appreciated wines, this DO is almost a seal of quality when choosing a wine.
Collines Antiques is a wine with high acidity and a good body, which translates into a wine with a lot of character.
It has a dark color, with a high and violet rim, which opens with very expressive notes of forest fruits such as currants, with a finish of spicy notes of pepper. In the mouth it is generous, with a wide and balanced flavor, which closes with acid touches.
Due to its slightly acid flavor and full body, this wine is the most suitable for pairing with grilled or stewed meats, as well as pasta with tomato.
4. Jean Leon 3055 Merlot Organic red wine
This wine could be the answer for users who are wondering which is the best organic Merlot. It is a wine that blends traditional Merlot grapes, from vines over 20 years old, and a percentage of Petit Verdot.
Its name, 3055, represents the license number of the taxi that Jean Leon drove in New York, a tribute to the humble origins of the founder of the most famous restaurant in Hollywood.
It is a fresh and elegant Merlot, with an intense red color, with purple rims in its upper layers. In the glass it is dense, opening with aromas of ripe red fruit, black pepper and toasted touches. In the mouth it has a tall structure, slightly sweet, with soft tannins that simulate fresh fruit flavors such as banana or peach.
It is a very versatile red that can accompany meat dishes, whether roasted or stewed, as well as fish with a strong flavor such as cod.
5. Barefoot Merlot Red Wine
Barefoot is a young Merlot that very well represents the values of the Barefoot Wine cellar, based in California. Its wines stand out for their captivating and innovative presentation, for which they have been awarded the most prestigious prizes in the US, such as the gold medal at the Denver Intl Wine Competition and the San Joaquin Valley Wine Competition.
It is one of the best value for money Merlots, thanks to its six-bottle box presentation. As for the tasting, it is a young wine, with a ruby red color and notes of red berries, chocolate and anise.
On the palate it is full of fruit flavors, with a very sweet finish reminiscent of cocoa.
It is a wine to pair with all kinds of meat, both white and red, as well as with pasta made from tomato sauces, cheeses and also desserts.
6. Hoya de Cadenas Merlot Crianza Red Wine
The merlot presented by the Hoya de Cadenas house is not only among the cheapest, it can also be considered among those that leave the best experiences on the palate. Its taste is smooth and velvety, capable of satisfying those seeking a wine with complex aromas and flavours.
On the other hand, it is a powerful Merlot with a dry aroma, in which notes of blackberry, plum and black fruit are perceived. As far as its color is concerned, it offers an attractive ruby red tone that is perceived in the glass, while its low acidity leaves a very pleasant sensation in the mouth. Thanks to these qualities, it can be used to accompany meat and pasta dishes.
Finally, we add that in this offer you can take 6 bottles of 75 cl each, to have enough in your cava and enjoy them little by little or, well, with friends.
7. La Estacada Wine Syrah Merlot
The wines produced in the La Estacada winery have the typical personality of La Mancha wines, with the character of Cuenca wines.
It is a blend of Merlot and Syrah that, without being one of the cheapest options, offers a quality wine, with a very showy presentation.
This Merlot has been produced using the most modern techniques and equipment, in order to obtain a full-bodied, opulent and vigorous oak red that reflects the personality of a traditional DO such as Uclés.
In the glass it offers shades of dark cherry, which open up to smoky and balsamic notes. On the palate it is a long wine, with marked tannins and intense fruit flavors with an acid finish.
It is a wine to pair with dishes with a strong flavor such as cured cheeses, tomato pasta and roast meats.
8. Lot 6 bottles Crianza Merlot de Autor DEYO DO Navarra
This could be the best Merlot of the moment, since it is a signature wine, with the Navarra Denomination of Origin. It is a monovarietal wine, so it has its own personality, with a round and long flavor, elegant and very easy to drink.
The winery, at the foot of the Pyrenees, makes its wines following the tradition of the south of France, so its products are very characteristic.
In this sense, we find ourselves before a Merlot aged 14 months in French oak barrels, with an intense ruby color and with a lot of layer. On the nose it has clean notes, with intense and spicy aromas, which close with smoky touches of black fruit. On the palate it is round, with fruit flavors and fine tannins, very structured and elegant.
It is a wine to accompany haute cuisine dishes, as well as red meats, game and stews with powerful or spicy sauces.
9. Tempus Regit Merlot
Tempus Regit is a monovarietal wine, made with 20-year-old Merlot grapes picked by hand from its vineyards and aged for 6 months in French oak barrels.
It is a young and fresh Merlot, produced by the Monóvar winery in the interior of the Alicante province of Medio Vinalopó. The grape, thanks to the characteristics of the limestone soil, has a lot of body and a great personality.
If you like Valencian wines and you are wondering which Merlot to buy, this could be the most suitable. It is a purple red wine, with violet hues, intense and bright.
In the glass it has clean aromas reminiscent of red fruits. In this sense, these scent notes become soft, fruity and tasty flavors.
It is a wine with a graduation of 14 degrees that pairs very well with red meats, sausages, game meats and cured cheeses.
10. Finca del Mar Crianza Merlot DO Valencia
Finca del Mar’s Merlot grapes are grown in vineyards near the sea, so they get many hours of sunshine. This translates into a coarse-grained grape, with a lot of sugar, as well as an ideal development of tannins and polyphenols.
The vinification takes place in stainless steel tanks at a constant temperature of 25 degrees with its skins, to obtain a wine with a lot of personality.
Thanks to this maceration system, the wine obtains a wide variety of aromas and flavors, with the best expression of the Merlot grape. In this sense, it has a ruby color with violet reflections, as well as an aroma with a lot of bouquet with sweet touches reminiscent of blueberries and plums.
On the palate it is soft and balanced, with hints of vanilla and fruit cake. It is a harmonious Merlot, with a lot of personality that pairs with all kinds of red meats, sausages and strong-flavored stews.
Origin and Use
Once our comparison of Merlots is finished, we will detail some aspects of these wines, such as their history, their possible mixtures, as well as the best conservation methods with which to maintain all the organoleptic properties of the wine.
The Merlot grape is one of the most appreciated by wine lovers, as it has great oenological potential. This variety is present in some of the best wines in the world and is the most widely used in the south of France. In this sense, it is a typical grape from the most Mediterranean region of the Gallic country, with which table wines were traditionally made, which were marketed at an affordable price and which, over time, began to be used to make wines from high end.
The origin of this grape variety is located in the Bordeaux region, in the southwest of France. It is in this area where it has established itself as a traditional variety and is, after Cabernet Sauvignon, the second most widely used and planted red grape variety in the world. In fact, they are very similar grapes, which is why they are often used in multivarietal wines, with Merlot being a little softer, as its tannins are lighter.
The strain has a green leaf, with a large, pentagonal-shaped blade, the underside of the leaf is slightly cottony and darker. Its clusters are compact, with small and uniformly sized berries. The grapes are wider, dark blue almost black in color and thick-skinned, with a very light flesh without pigmentation.
The main characteristic of these vines is their early maturation, which makes the Merlot grape the best option for making young wines. In this sense, many wineries collect the grapes before they are fully ripe to obtain slightly more acidic and complex wines. In addition, this variety adapts to climatic and soil conditions, so its organoleptic properties vary in each area, which is why it has earned the name “chameleon variety”.
The wines made with Merlot stand out for their smoothness and finesse. Also for its fruity aromas reminiscent of berries, ripe fruit and ending with hints of spices. Merlot wines age quickly, but retain all their properties over time, so when they mature they become more complex than those of other varieties.
Once we know the origin and characteristics of this variety, we follow our guide to buy the best Merlot, detailing some combinations that we can make with this red wine.
We start with a Blackberry Cola, an ideal cocktail for evening gatherings with friends. To make it, mix 1 part red wine, 4 parts cola, half dry sherry, half sweet sherry and half brandy in a cocktail shaker. Shake and serve in a glass with ice.
It is also possible to prepare a Burgundy, a cocktail created in Chile, which is very refreshing and delicious, ideal for the hottest days of summer. It is made directly in the glass, mixing 1 part of Merlot, with 4 of Ginger Ale, strawberries and ice.
The wine, no matter how much it costs, is marketed in its optimal state of consumption. In this sense, if the bottle is kept with its cork and unopened, it can last up to two years without losing its organoleptic properties. To do this, it must be kept horizontal, so that the broth bathes the cork, in a dry and dark place, which has a constant temperature, as well as free from vibrations or movements.
Once opened, even the cheapest wine can last up to two weeks before it begins to “sting”. To keep open Merlot, it must be stored in the refrigerator, covered with its original cork and in an upright position. In this sense, it is advisable not to leave it in the refrigerator door, since it moves and can harm the taste and its properties.
In a glass of Merlot (150ml) we can find 123 calories. Of these calories, 97% are carbohydrates, while 3% are protein and 0% are fat. These wines, in the amount indicated, have an energy intake of 517 kJ with a sodium content of 6 mg and 187 mg of potassium.
Wine, like any alcoholic beverage, should be consumed responsibly. In this sense, you should never drive after having consumed wine. Nor should heavy machinery be operated and those under 18 years of age cannot consume alcoholic beverages.