External Reviews for Chateau Ste. Michelle Merlot
This has a lightly funky nose that leads into a rather flat midpalate, with barrel toast and simple red fruit. It all resolves quickly into a one-dimensional finish.
This fresh, vibrant red features supple texture and well-defined cherry and currant flavors. Ripe, but remains clear and refreshing through the finish. Drink now through 2015.
For thoughts on Chateau Ste Michelle’s uniqueness and recent evolution, consult my extensive April, 2013 text designed to introduce recent tasting notes. Incorporating tiny amounts of the other major Bordeaux varieties as well as 4% Syrah, the Ste Michelle’s basic 2009 Merlot delivers a positive, deep combination of dark cherry, humus-like earthiness tinged with cinnamon and saliva-inducing salinity. As it opens to the air, a greenhouse-like amalgam of flowering and leafing things adds cepage-typical allure, and the polish of tannins and degree of persistence here are admirable for a wine of its price and 100,000-case volume. Enjoy this excellent value over the next 2–3 years.