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Tuesday, October 1, 2019

October Wine Pick: Benziger Merlot 2016

October is #MerlotMe month so expect a lot of Merlot all over the internet for the next 31 days. I'll be dropping Merlot quickies here and there but for full rated reviews I've got a two wines from Chile, three from Spain, and two from Monteccuco, Italy.

Wine Bloggers Off-Topic #4 will be coming out two weeks from today and the topic is your most favorite building in the world, so if you want to participate then contact me. What's my monthly article going to be about? Merlot, of course! If I had to pick one varietal to drink for the rest of my life it would be Merlot, and I can't wait to write all about it.

And because it's #MerlotMe month, my wine pick for October is my go-to suggestion every year for people looking for a Merlot in the most common price range for consumers: Benziger Merlot.

Benziger took a huge gamble back in the 1990's and completely restructured their vineyards and their systems to become certified sustainable using biodynamic techniques. Biodynamic is basically taking organic to another level. A lot of it makes sense scientifically but a lot of it is a bunch of woo magic that sounds completely bonkers. It's like if the science of astronomy and the mythology of astrology had a baby. But in my experience, even as a huge skeptic of anything supernatural, there is no question that the biodynamic system makes better wine. I'll never forget what Chris Benziger told me when I met him: "It sounds crazy. I still think it's crazy. But all I care about is that it works and it does."

The color of the wine is ruby red. Normally this wine is like blueberry pie with blackerries and cinnamon, but this year it's more plummy and spicy. There's aromas of plums, black cherries, vanilla, black pepper, and ancho chilis. On the palate it's medium bodied with a rich mouthfeel and grainy structured tannin. There's flavors of black cherries, plums, bitter dark chocolate, vanilla, and graphite. The plums, dark chocolate, and graphite are big on the thick and juicy and hot alcoholy finish.

The 2016 Merlot is not as Cadillac smooth as it normally is and it's definitely a more "Cabby" Merlot in its overall profile. But it's still a damn good Merlot for the price. #MerlotMe

Price: $15
Rating: 4/5 = Recommended (what does that mean?)

The bottle used was purchase by myself with my own money for purpose of this unpaid review. To have your wine reviewed follow this link.

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