Stadium Sip: Miracle Valley Vineyard Merlot 2006
The Redskins moved onto 5-2 last Sunday with a win over the Cleveland Browns. Not only are the Redskins on course to make the playoffs, but Clinton Portis is the leading rusher in the NFL - Great news for Redskin's fans, right?
Now, a wine making a comeback of its own is Merlot. If you remember, Merlot was caught off-guard by an opponent in 2004, titled Sideways. This movie left Merlot with what is known as the ‘Sideways effect’, where sales of Merlot really took a big hit (and not in a good way), while Pinot Noir sales went into overdrive. Merlot is now starting to make a bit of a comeback, which may have a lot to do with simple economics. You see, for less than $20, Merlot is a safer bet for casual drinking, while Pinot Noir is one of the few varietal wines where you get what you pay for. And for those adventurous enough to explore Burgundy, which I highly recommend, you will no doubt find a number of satisfying rewards, but it will come at a price, no doubt.
In Virginia, I have found that Merlot can really shine in good vintage years. What I have not found is much consistency in quality amongst producers. From tasting on the wine trail, the Breaux Vineyards 2002 and the Ingleside Vineyards 2005 are examples I recommend seeking out. A newer winery in Delaplane, Miracle Valley Vineyards, also makes a nice Merlot, which made it to the tail-gate party with us and is this week’s stadium sip.
The Miracle Valley Vineyard Merlot 2006 is a medium bodied wine done in a more fruit forward, easy drinking style. It displays a nice garnet color and offers red fruit and cedar hints on the nose. On the palate are soft cherry, raspberry and spice flavors with a medium length finish. This wine retails for about $18 and the only place I know to find it is the tasting room, so plan a trip out to Miracle Valley Vineyards sometime soon.
I would be remiss if I did not mention Bordeaux when talking about Merlot. Merlot dominates the right bank wine districts of Pomerol and Saint-Émilion. These two areas are the height of fashion in Merlot, producing wines of finesse and elegance. If you are still under the spell of the ‘Sideways effect’, I suggest finding your cure here.
Click Here to visit the Miracle Valley Vineyard website.
Stay tuned friends ... More to come !!!
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