Native to the Right Bank area in the Bordeaux region of France, this grape is now grown all over the world. The Merlot grape produces single varietal wines that are plump and round. Despite a temporary slump in sales after movie “Sideways” was released, California and Chile are leading the way on recreating the excitement behind 100% Merlot wines.
In Bordeaux, France the grape is mainly used for blending where it adds body and a velvety characteristic to the tannic Cabernet Sauvignon. Merlot is often viewed as the ‘insurance policy’ grape, as it ripens sooner than Cabernet Sauvignon and will fully ripen even in cooler vintages.