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Avant-Garde Merlot

Avant-Garde Merlot Wine Details
Price: $27.00 per bottle

Description: The Avant-Garde 2002 Merlot represents the second vintage of a rich and elegant wine. Production of this small block of old vine merlot began as a wine-making experiment and has already become a standard in the line-up of high quality Domaine Carneros wines. The Carneros Region is ideal for growing merlot. The clay soils of the region create rich deep color. The cooler, moister weather preserves and brings out the complexity of high tone aromas and fresh berry fruit flavors. It is then fermented in small open-topped tanks and aged for 16 months in French oak barrels that have been selected to broaden and enhance the essence of the merlot. The Avant-Garde Merlot is a wine of dark and intense fruit flavors such as blackberry and cassis complemented by exotic East Indian spices, tea and orange peel. A perfect accompaniment to lamb, pork and beef, the Avant-Garde Merlot will also enhance the flavors of great winter dishes such as stews and cassoulets. Only 1875 cases of this second vintage were made and it is available only at the winery.

Varietal Definition
Merlot is known as a Noble Bordeaux varietal. Although it came to France in the first century, it was not named until the 1880s. Merlot was originally used only for blending, as it is soft and compliant, very useful in softening other Bordeaux wines like Cabernets. Recently in California and Chile it became popular as a 100% varietal wine. Merlot tends to be easier to grow in a variety of soil conditions and is harvested earlier in the year than Cabernet. Although most Merlots are made to be drunk earlier, there are many with complexities of a Cabernet. Flavors of plum, black cherry, violet, chocolate and orange pair well with rich, red pasta dishes, hearty chicken dishes, and any beef combination that you fancy. The perfect match of course is chocolate. Not only does the chocolate compliment the wine and vice-versa, but the essence of both flavors linger eternally.


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