I don't remember exactly where I first came across Lenndevous blog bug I've subscribed to it for a couple of months. Lenn proposed have a monthly blog wine tasting event similar to the monthly cooking even "Is My Blog Burning?". My blog isn't oriented toward food but I do enjoy drinking wine so I thought I'd grab a bottle and join in.
I wanted to select a Chilean Merlot because we recently visited Chile in December 2003. In planning for the trip, we tried several Chilean wines. I enjoyed the wines. They were always a good economical wine but I never found anything really stellar.
My wine was Veramonte 2002 Merlot Casablanca Valley. I purchased it at my local grocer, Larry's Market, which has a good selection of wines. It was on sale at $7.99; $3.00 off the normal price of $10.99.
The tasting notes on the bottle;
"Deep berry flavors merge with a velvety smooth mouthfeel, hints of chocolate and sweet oak."
Larry's had a tag above the wine from Wine Enthusiast rating the wine 90. I looked it up on-line and that was the rating for the 2000 vintage. Don't you just hate it when they promote the wine with the rating and review from a different year! The 2002 vintage is rated 86;
"Bright in the glass, with a ruby tint. The nose offers good berry fruit and some plum, while the palate is basic and pure, with mild tannins and round fruit. Quite simple yet satisfying."
The inital taste was very berry. As it opened up, I could taste more undertones of chocolate along with berry and plum. It was medium bodied with some tannins. The aroma changed throughout the evening. At one point the aroma was of cranberries and later more leather. It was interesting throughout the evening.
It went well with dinner. I had a home-made burger and G had a portabello mushroom burger with feta cheese. Oven roasted fries was the side.
I don't particularly like Merlot. I prefer spicier reds such as a Rhone Syrah or a Zinfandel. Merlots tend to be too soft and somewhat boring to me. I did enjoy this wine and would recommend it to others who were looking for a good buy on a Merlot. I probably would not purchase it again mainly because I don't care much for Merlot.