"Our Best Merlots "

  by Fred McMillin


Prologue

Alderbrook Merlot Merlot is the red-wine success of the 199Os; its popularity has soared along with its acreage (which more than doubled in California in the first four years of the '9Os.)

...California Wine, by James Laube


 


Top Merlots (Tasted Blind)

Here are the dozen bottles that taste best now.

Bargains    
Bernard Portet
Clos Du Val President & Winemaker, Bernard Portet
2nd - $11, '97 Robert Mondavi Coastal
Top - $12 , '95 Hahn Winery (pictured)
     
The Best    
10th - Charles Krug Reserve, '94, $21.5O
9th - St. Clement, '95, $24
8th - Gundlach-Bundschu, '95, $21
7th - Alderbrook, '95, $18 (pictured)
6th - Raymond Reserve, '95, $2O
5th - Clos du Val, '95, $28 (pictured)
4th - Matanzas Creek, '95, $45 (Note 1)
3rd - Lockwood, '94, $24
2nd - Preston (Wash.), '94, $19
Winner - Clos Pegase, '96, $22.5O

 

Postscript

Hahn Winery U.S.A. Merlots are in their infancy. There's not much data yet on how well they will age. Consequently I advise my students on tight budgets, buy now, drink now. If you want to start aging some California reds, the Cabs are a much safer bet.

Note 1: Probably will rank #1 by 2OO3 A.D.

 

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