The History of Merlot Red Wine

Admired for its soft, smooth and velvety texture, Merlot Red Wine has won the hearts of many around the world. It has been called the Queen of wines being one of the most popular wine grapes planted in the world and because of its juicy flavours that are well paired with steaks and lamb. At St Anne’s, we believe that creating beautiful Merlot comes from knowing its history and that starts from its origins in the Bordeaux region of France.

French Origins

Merlot is a variety of black wine grape that is originally from the Bordeaux region of France dating back all the way to the first century AD. The name is suggested to have been associated with the French word “merle,” which translates to blackbird where both blackbird and the Merlot grape share the similar black and blue colour.

Back in the day, the inconsistent weather in France caused the harvest to be different each year. This led winemakers to blend grapes together to ensure the balance of the flavours in their wines each year. While Merlot is primarily used as a blending grape, there are still a few places in Bordeaux that only makes Merlot-based wines and are known to be some of the most famous and expensive wines in the world that can cost over $5000 a bottle.

Rising Popularity

In 1990, Merlot was the seventh most popular grape being planted in the world and jumped right to second place by 2010 being almost close to Cabernet Sauvignon, the other main grape used in Bordeaux wine, as number one. Now, nearly two thirds of Merlot in the world is being planted in its native France. It is also grown in Italy, Romania, Argentina, South Africa, Switzerland, the United States and Australia to name a few.

Complex Tastes and Smooth Textures

There is always a new flavour to find in Merlot every time you take a sip. When drinking Merlot red wine, most people describe it as a drinkable red wine with bold taste. Textures include being velvety and smooth while many drinkers taste flavours of black cherries, red currants and even blueberries. Other flavour characteristics you might pick up on are its light or smokey oak flavours, floral violet and rose flavours with hints of spices ranging from mint to bay leaves. When compared to Cabernet, it is shown to have lower acidity making it great to pair with barbecued meats and red meats.

St Anne’s Award Winning Merlot Red Wine

Since 2013 our Merlot has picked up 7 state awards for taste and quality. As we ease into the colder months, get a bottle or six of our Merlot red wine from our cellar doors or our online shop and enjoy as an accompaniment to a rich meal with friends and family. And when you do, you’ll be able to appreciate its complex taste even more as you regail guests with your knowledge of the wine’s origin.

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