Merlot hails from France. It’s also the most commonly planted varietal there, and is equally popular around the world. As a more fruit-forward wine and with softer tannins and than your standard Cabernet, Merlot is very approachable and often a favourite among those who are unaccustomed to reds. Merlot’s medium tannin and acidity levels means the wine pairs well with slow cooked food, lighter meats like duck and pork or tomato based pasta dishes.
A port city on the Garonne River in southwestern France, Bordeaux is widely regarded as one of the world capitals of wine. The Atlantic Ocean moderates the area’s temperatures, while the pine forests protect the vines from ocean winds, allowing the vineyards to produce typically medium bodied, complex wines in the limestone rich soils. Bordeaux is famous for dry-medium, full bodied red wines, in particular the Bordeaux blends. Popular varietals here include Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Petit Verdot and Malbec.