Sunday, March 14, 2010

Wow! - or how we stopped worrying and learned to love the F**king Merlot

I had forgotten to mention I also picked up a bottle of white, a Rizzardi Pinot Grigio, which I've got before and I liked it again. It's crisp and fruity and very moreish (I hate that word but it's apt here).

Next up the big event, the Clos du Val Merlot 2006, as I mentioned in my previous post I am wary of pure New World Merlots given past experiences, although Clos du Val are a very respected winery and their Stag's Leap Cabernet Sauvignon was one of the U.S. wines involved in the famous 1976 Judgement of Paris. I bought a bottle of this once, €44 reduced from €55 and it was up there with best Bordeaux and while expensive, is a fraction of the price of a Premier Cru for example.

Anyhoo, after about 90 minutes in the decanter, we had our first sip and boy howdy it was good. I didn't think it much like a right bank Bordeaux, it was softer, fruitier with a hint of spice. This was not a light wine though, it was rich and complex with a lingering finish and I felt it was more like a New World take on a St Emilion than an effort to ape it.

Even at full price (€22-95) I would buy this for a treat, at €16-95 it's a freaking steal. It makes me want to try the Zinfandel even more. Perhaps next weekend if I'm feeling flathĂșlach.


  1. I was early for a meeting in Sandyford last week and tried the Clos du Val Merlot in O'Brien's in the Beacon - was just as impressed as your good self. Their Chardonnay is also very good - Meursault style - butter, nuts and brioche.

    Incidentally, the book by George Taber called the Judgement of Paris is a very good account of the tasting. And for the saccharin version, Bottleshock is currently on anytime TV on Sky plus - centres on Chateau Montelena, and is watchable at best.

    Keep up the good work, Willie, enjoying reading your blog.


  2. We saw Bottleshock recently - the wine stuff was good but the other 80% (love triangle etc.) was garbage.

    I'm looking forward to trying the Clos Du Val Zinfandel and now the Chardonnay...


  3. Hi, I have to say thanks for the Clos Du Val Merlot recommendation. It's meaty for a Merlot, but boy, it's good and you can really taste the qaulity. Dying to try out the other blends now...

  4. Glad you liked it - let me know how you get on with the others from Clos Du Val...