Wednesday, January 26, 2005

Quick Swirl: Clos du Bois Merlot 2001 (NW)

A few quick notes on a Merlot that I find in many stores and restaurants:

Clos du Bois Merlot 2001:

Fruity, fragrant nose of strawberries and cherry
Oak and vanilla on the palate
Smooth finish, light tannins

This is a smooth, easy drinking wine that has a nice well-rounded character- nothing extraordinary, but just good, solid Merlot qualities. It complements a variety of foods and has a nice, fragrant quality. Merlot became extemely popular in the 1990's because of this type of wine (just look at the number of restaurants and bars that offer a Merlot as their default house red wine). But, what about the price? I paid $18 for a bottle in Florida. Why is it so much? Clos du Bois has received some high scores for its Merlots in the past, but lately the scores are average. Do they rest on their laurels? Let's assume this is a typical, well crafted Merlot that we would consider pairing with a variety of foods and offer in a variety of settings. If that's that case, I want to spend $8-12. Maybe, I'll spend $15. There are an aweful lot of domestic wines that are priced a bit too high. I don't want to automatically run out and get an import, but for $18 a bottle, you can bring home a border-line world class Merlot from Chile. California produces some of the best varietal wines in the world, but be careful with your money. Many $50 Merlots are justifiably priced, but many $18 bottles are just Merlots. Still, this Clos du Bois is good drinking. I just wish it were justifiably priced at just $12. Just my opinion, of course! Raise a glass! -NW


Anonymous said...

Yea, something to think about with merlot!

Anonymous said...

Well said! I'll drink to that!