Merlot: A Varietal That Plays Well with Others #MerlotMe #WinePW #Sponsored

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of the #MerlotMe event sponsors.

Complimentary wine was provided for this post and this page may contain affiliate links.
However, all opinions expressed here are my own. 

It's October. Do you know what that means? It's the time of year when bottles of Merlot start arriving at my door for #MerlotMe. The Wine Pairing Weekend  - #WinePW - crew has been participating in this online celebration of the Merlot grape for the past five years. So, once again, October's Wine Pairing Weekend collides with the event. Jeff of Food Wine Click! invited us to jump on the #MerlotMe bandwagon with him again this year. Welcome to year six!

The MerlotMe website encourages wine lovers to "celebrate the greatness of Merlot throughout the month of October." So, we are. In addition, all of the #winePW bloggers were offered bottles of Merlot to try, taste, and pair for this event. Complimentary wine? You bet. I'm in. 

Read the invitation here. 

If you are reading this early enough, feel free to join in the #WinePW live Twitter chat on Saturday, October 10th at 8am Pacific time. Follow the hashtag and be sure to add it to anything you post so that we can see it in our stream. In the meantime, these posts will be live by chat time on Saturday...

Andrea at The Quirky Cork shares Three Turkish Merlots.
Camilla at Culinary Adventures with Camilla posts Merlot: A Varietal That Plays Well with Others.
Cindy at Grape Experiences says to Sip Memorable Merlot with Classic Vegetarian Favorites.

Deanna at Asian Test Kitchen offers a Fall Vegan Menu Paired with 2016 Napa Merlots.
David at Cooking Chat shares Merlot Food Pairing: Tips and Favorites.
Gwendolyn at Wine Predator shares Meatloaf and #MerlotMe with Sonoma’s Selby and Columbia Valley’s L’Ecole No. 41.
Jane at Always Ravenous gives us a Merlot Pairing: Baked Pasta with Sausage Ragù.
Jeff at Food Wine Click! shares A Tale of Two Merlots at the Grill.
Jill at L'Occasion asks What’s So Special About Merlot?
Jennifer at Vino Travels declares Fall is Here! Warm up with a Merlot and Pot Roast Pairing.
Lauren at The Swirling Dervish posts October is #MerlotMe Month: Here’s What I’ve Been Sipping.
Linda at My Full Wine Glass is Kicking off #MerlotMe in the Pacific Time Zone.
Liz at What's in that Bottle? says Make Room for Merlot!
Lori at Exploring the Wine Glass has Leaves on the Ground and #MerlotMe in My Glass.
Lynn at Savor the Harvest gives us Next Gen Merlot From Where It All Started.
Martin at Enofylz writes A Meatless #MerlotMe Redux.
Nicole at Somm's Table has 5 #MerlotMe Nights.
Payal at Keep the Peas is Kicking Off Autumn With #Merlotme.
Pinny at Chinese Wine & Food Pairings celebrates #MerlotMe with Markham and L’Ecole No. 41 Merlots and Army Ramen.
Robin at Crushed Grape Chronicles posts Merlot from Elegant to Badass. Time to #Merlotme.
Rupal at Syrah Queen writes #MerlotMe - Best Food Pairings For Merlot.
Susannah at Avvinare says Brazilian Merlot Is Always Welcome At My Table.
Terri at Our Good Life pairs Merlot Me with No Noodle Lasagne.
Wendy at A Day in the Life on the Farm declares Woohoooooooo....It is #MerlotMe Month.

Merlot: A Varietal That Plays Well with Others

Through several years of participating in this event and exploring different food pairings, I can say with absolute certainty that Merlot is a varietal that plays well with others. Click on the pairing titles to go to the original post. I have excerpted some of my tasting notes.

The first pairing I shared was Chorizo-Stuffed Caps, Roasted Mushrooms with Mozzarella Toasts, and the 2017 L'Ecole Merlot. 

"I have tried earlier vintages of this wine and this was just as delightful as I remember the other bottles. With layers of complex aromas, I noted the florals of rose petals, earthiness of tobacco, and woodiness of cedar among the expected black fruits. On the palate, the wine was full-bodied and well-balanced with flavors of chocolate and peppercorn added to the aromas I detected earlier. And with its lingering finish this wine was a good match for savory dishes, especially with earthy mushrooms!"

Then I made Lebanese Lubyi, Turkish Bazlama, and St. Supéry Rutherford Merlot.

"This Merlot pours a deep ruby color with purple highlights. Aromas of black fruit and dark chocolate combine with licorice, smoky oak, and a hint of wet slate that result in a richly flavored wine that is both tangy and balanced. This structured, elegant Merlot had Jake thinking of his favorite lamb dish from his childhood, so I made it and this wine paired fantastically with it."

I have a few other current pairings to share throughout the rest of the month. But here are a few of my favorites matches from years before!

Pesto Sheetpan Chicken with 2015 Trefethen Merlot; Coffee-Rubbed Lamb Tagine with Seven Hills Merlot; Pope Valley + Merlot-Poached Pears; and Markham Vineyards Estate Merlot 2015 + Poached Salmon Salad with Vanilla Bean Vinaigrette and Some Chocolate.

on the web, on Facebook

*Disclosure: I received compensation in the form of wine samples for recipe development and generating social media traction. My opinions do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the organizer and sponsors of this event.

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