Known as a Noble Bordeaux varietal, the Merlot grape traces its ancestry to the biturica variety in the first century. The “Merlot” grape was not named as a distinct variety until the 1800s.
Merlot tends to be more tolerant of soil conditions than a Cabernet vine is, and while it buds earlier, it also can be harvested earlier.
The 2011 Hume Vineyards Merlot presents light ruby in the glass with an almost cherry red hue. The nose is full with blackberries and plum undertones.
Sharp and bright on the attack with an undercurrent of red cherry and black pepper, the midpalate is jammy with blackberries, strawberry preserves and plum elements. The lightly tannic finish lingers slightly with hints of black cherry, dark chocolate and tobacco.
The 2011 Hume Vineyards Merlot is mellow but maintains a level of complexity. A great late summer red, it is a perfect match for beef and other medium-heavy dishes. Try some with a rich, red pasta dish, or even a heavy chicken dish. Chocolate is also an excellent pairing for this wine.
In general, Merlot does not have the aging potential of a barrel fermented Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc or Meritage but I believe this Merlot will increase slightly in complexity, especially on the finish, over the next twelve to eighteen months.
DRINK NOW – SPRING 2015