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Monday, 9 March 2009

Merlot 2002

8th March 2009

Yes the heading is right and so is the label and this is still the Loire. A real curiosity – a Merlot grown somewhere in the Loire under authorised experimental conditions – I'm not allowed to say where. From time to time there has been debate in the Loire about allowing Merlot to be grown in the region and used either as a single varietal or in a blend with Cabernet.

The 2002 has quite a deep and dense colour with ripe, sweet fruit – plum and mulberry. It has a slightly confected taste and doesn't have the signature acidity or freshness for which the Loire is known. However, certainly still youthful for a Merlot that is nearly seven years old. Tasted blind I might guess that it came from the south of France or perhaps Chile. It does have an admirably plain, contemporary label!

It certainly does not make a compelling case that Merlot should be a permitted variety in the Loire. On the other hand I can think of some tough and tannic Anjou Villages that might well benefit from a dollop of this!

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