Top Merlot From $15 to $20

A collection of Merlots that fall into GDP's value sweet spot

 


2009 Seven Hills Columbia Valley Merlot 14.2% $24

A spicy wine with aromas of cinnamon and ginger and flavors of crème brûlée accenting the blackcurrant and black plum fruit. Balanced but oaky.  87pts Read The Full Review
 
Acid: Medium- High
Tannin:Medium-Low
Sweetness: Low
Oak: Medium-Low
Spicy Flavors: Medium-High
Savory Flavors: Medium-Low
Fruity Flavors: Medium
Intensity of Flavors: Medium-High
Mouthfeel: Medium- to Light-Bodied
 

2010 The Magnificent Wine Company The Original Mountain Merlot 13.5% $20

A little obvious sweetness on the palate comes off as candied red cherry fruit and Twizzlers candy, but it is cut by a nice dash of cinnamon that leads to a slightly more oaky finish. A fun wine that’s a bit simple and easy to drink. 87pts Read The Full Review
 
Acid: Medium
Tannin: Low
Sweetness: Medium- Low
Oak: Medium-Low
Spicy Flavors: Medium-Low
Savory Flavors: Low
Fruity Flavors: Medium
Intensity of Flavors: Medium
Mouthfeel: Medium- to Light-Bodied

2009 Kendall-Jackson Merlot Vintners Reserve 13.5% $17

A touch of herb accents the nose along with some creamy vanilla, which also shows up on the smooth palate. Supports sweet cherry and red plum fruit. 86pts Read The Full Review
 
Acid: Medium-Low
Tannin: Low
Sweetness: Medium-Low
Oak: Medium-Low
Spicy Flavors: Low
Savory Flavors: Medium-Low
Fruity Flavors: Medium-Low
Intensity of Flavors: Medium-Low
Mouthfeel: Medium-Bodied
 

NV Hope Family Wines Candor Merlot Lot 3 14.5% $16

Toasty flavors of black pepper and wood spice dominate the wine. Cocoa accents over dried fruit, plums and dates power through on the back end, culminating in a finish that is disjointed and a bit hot. 86pts Read The Full Review
 

Acid: Medium-Low
Tannin: Medium
Sweetness: Low
Oak: Medium
Spicy Flavors: Medium-Low
Savory Flavors: Medium-Low
Fruity Flavors: Medium
Intensity of Flavors: Medium-Low
Mouthfeel: Medium- to Full-Bodied
 

2007 Robert Mondavi Napa Valley Merlot 16% $20

A little vanilla and crème brûlée grace the nose and palate here, supporting the bold black cherry and dried red fruits. There’s a lot of drying tannin that emerges on the back end and finish, which shows a bit of heat. 84pts Read The Full Review
 
Acid: Low
Tannin: Medium-High
Sweetness: Low
Oak: Medium
Spicy Flavors: Medium-Low
Savory Flavors: Low
Fruity Flavors: Medium-High
Intensity of Flavors: Medium
Mouthfeel: Medium-Bodied
 

2008 Chatom Vineyards Merlot Calaveras County 14.8% $20

A touch of something spicy and green graces the nose along with a hint of peppercorn. The brambly black cherry and plum fruits have a little leather-dried edge. Ends with drying tannins and alcoholic heat. 84pts Read The Full Review
 
Acid: Medium
Tannin: Medium
Sweetness: Medium-Low
Oak: Medium-Low
Spicy Flavors: Medium-Low
Savory Flavors: Medium-Low
Fruity Flavors: Medium
Intensity of Flavors: Medium
Mouthfeel: Medium-Bodied
 

2008 Penley Estate Gryphon Coonawarra Merlot $20

Subtle mace and allspice berry accent wild game and truffle funk notes in both the nose and mouth. There are some dark cherry and dried fruit flavors on the palate, but they play beneath the funk and just disappear on the finish. 80pts Read The Full Review
 
Acid: Medium-Low
Tannin: Low
Sweetness: Low
Oak: Medium-Low
Spicy Flavors: Medium-Low
Savory Flavors: Medium-High
Fruity Flavors: Medium-Low
Intensity of Flavors: Medium-High
Mouthfeel: Medium-Bodied
 

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Top 7 Merlot From $15-$20

1.
Waterstone Merlot Napa Valley (2008)
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2.
Charles Krug Winery Peter Mondavi Family Merlot Napa Valley (2009)
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3.
Rutherford Ranch Merlot (2008)
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4.
Mcconnell Estates Winery Merlot Wackman Ranch (2008)
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5.
Charles Krug Winery Peter Mondavi Family Merlot Napa Valley (2008)
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6.
Mcconnell Estates Winery Merlot Wackman Ranch (2007)
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7.
Decoy Cabernet Sauvignon (2010)
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Comments

  • Snooth User: steve666
    392767 155

    Bravo on the simplified assessments. Not only are they more understandable, it is far quicker and clearer. The link to "full review" is a nice idea, but the link I followed brought me to a visually confusing page where the review was quite a ways down the page. Yes, I understand this is done to enable Snooth to please the wineries and generate more click through business for Snooth, but it is rather annoying. Put the full review in a cleaner simplified page and it ultimately will be more effective. Simply put, I doubt I will read any full reviews unless I am really interested in a wine, under a more readable format I would red most of them.

    Oct 09, 2012 at 4:21 PM


  • Snooth User: Goodlife11
    457084 324

    I appreciate the effort here, but I think part of the romance of wine has to do with all the 'descriptives' that are included in the 'full review.' I think visitors to Snooth are looking for that level of details, as opposed to a few mentions of low/medium/high on a sliding scale. I actually don't read these reviews any longer, because I don't feel I get as much. That being said, I bypass them for the full review, so thanks for including that link. See what the crowd says and go from there I guess.

    Oct 09, 2012 at 6:15 PM


  • Cheers to your honesty and integrity Greg!. Maybe I'll find some Merlot I like, thanks to you. Oh, and I'm expecting delivery of my new 150 (?) bottle cabinet this Thursday. I'm sure I have enough top shelf wines to fill it, but the inventory has to rotate, and I have little money. Thank you again for years of insight.

    Oct 09, 2012 at 7:48 PM


  • Snooth User: teddz
    880703 39

    I've recently tasted through some low priced 2009 Bordeaux, and find lots of nice fruit (along with bordelais structure of course) in wines that are high in Merlot from that vintage. A nice one in this price range is Chateau Marjosse ($18 in Ohio where I am), 80% merlot, so close enough for this category. A Lurton property, so the winemaking is solid, if not flamboyant. I think it would compare favorably with the reviews I see here (and I wonder why nothing from Bordeaux on the list?)

    Oct 10, 2012 at 2:35 PM


  • Hi, Gregory. I like your experiment and the straight-forward language! If you decide to continue with this I'd like to suggest that you add typicity

    Oct 10, 2012 at 8:35 PM


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