#MerlotMe: A Great Lineup from Duckhorn

This month we are showcasing the wonderful variety, Merlot, which supports the #MerlotMe event happening during the month of October. We’re kicking off the event spotlighting great Merlot made by an awesome producer, Duckhorn Vineyards, a California winery that’s produced Bordeaux varietal wines since the late 1970’s. Their focus on the Merlot variety is true and strong–knowing that Merlot was undervalued and underappreciated, the winery set out to change all that by planting and bottling Merlot as a single variety, rather than allowing it to play second fiddle to Cabernet Sauvignon.

We started the evening pairing the wine with an awesome pizza, and then some grilled sirloin steak, which was really delicious! Basically any grilled meat would go well with Duckhorn wines.

duckhorn wine

2015 Duckhorn Decoy Merlot, Sonoma County, California

Decoy Merlot from Duckhorn Vineyards offers high quality, low yield Sonoma County fruit that delivers all the bells and whistles one might expect from a soft textured plush California Merlot. Forward dark red berry flavors intertwine with chocolate and herbal notes. Balanced acidity adds a touch of sophistication exposing refined tannins on the silky finish.

Very Good | $25 | 13.9% ABV

2014 Duckhorn Merlot, Napa Valley, California

Duckhorn Napa Valley Merlot has been the standard bearer for California Merlot for more than three decades. The 1984 vintage was the first bottle of this wine I consumed and it was an eye-opener; a wine filled with grace and balance, it was very similar to this current release. Intense and muscular with so much fruit the 2014 vintage showcases everything a well-made Merlot can bring to the table. Dripping with huge ripe cherry flavor as the wine glides across the palate exposing notes of anise, fig, and cedar combined with the minerality of crushed stone completing the package. We added blue cheese and shaved truffle to the grilled sirloin to bring out the best of this culinary workhorse of a wine.

Excellent | $54 | 14.5% ABV

Grilled Sirloin

2014 Duckhorn Merlot Three Palms Vineyard, Napa Valley, California

Had the character ‘Miles’ from the movie Sideways ever consumed this wine, he would have never uttered the words “I’m not drinking any F***ing Merlot.”  Instead, he would have probably been reminded that some of the finest Bordeaux wines produced on the right-bank of the Gironde River are primarily Merlot. This wine surpasses the quality and desirability of most Bordeaux wines from both banks. Opulent and polished, this wine reaches the pinnacle of quality, delivering a level of pureness and honesty seldom reached by any wine at any price. The layers of concentrated red fruit flavors build on the palate continuing with nuances of graphite and spicy cardamom. The finish lingers luxuriously as a parting reminder of just how superior this wine actually is.

Outstanding | $98 | 14.5% ABV


Would you like to participate in the #MerlotMe event? Head here for more info: http://www.merlotme.com/


About the Author:

Marc has held almost every position in the food & wine industry and is committed to Celebrating Hospitality with Pride. In addition to being the co-founder and editor-at-large for Enobytes, Marc is a wine blogger contributor to OregonLive.com (Wine Bytes) and writes the Wine Knowledge column in the print magazine About Face. The Contra Costa County Times, San Jose Mercury News, Tacoma Times Tribune and Washington Post have either interviewed or quoted Marc on his viniferous and culinary opinions. Marc has also appeared on Portland's "Vine Time" on News Radio 750 KXL and on California's Central Coast "From the Growing of the Grape to the Glass" on KUHL-AM 1410. He is also the author of A History of Pacific Northwest Cuisine: Mastodons to Molecular Gastronomy. While continuing to tenaciously search for what he may finally proclaim as his favorite wine Marc is relentless in his quest for the ultimate food and wine experience.

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