#WOTW: a smooth, smouldering and stylish Merlot
Our second ‘wine of the week’ comes from Washington State, on America’s West Coast.
Chateau Ste Michelle is a huge producer, accounting for something like two thirds of all the grapes grown in the state. It produces a diverse range of wines, but this one struck me as a thoroughly enjoyable crowd pleaser. Smouldering, smooth and subtly spicy, if this wine was a singer, it would be Sade. Offering a rich feast of ripe blackberries and squishy cherry, it’s emphatically an American take on Merlot, but the alcohol is nicely judged at 13.5% too, which makes it refreshingly un-American in that respect. I can think of so many friends who would love this wine. A good one for barbecues too!
Chateau Ste Michelle Columbia Valley Merlot (£16.50 from Great Western Wine).
Look out for my report from Washington State (coming soon), and my top ten wines from the trip, at The Buyer. I’ll also be talking about Washington on my monthly BBC feature with Bill Buckley next week.