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2011 Chateau Ste. Michelle Merlot

April 24, 2014 - Norman Bentley
#17-14-PIE

I like Merlot with lamb, so with our big feast last weekend, we chose a bottle of Indian Wells Merlot to pair with our lamb. It was a good choice! I have had several vintages in the past of the Chateau Ste. Michelle Indian Wells Merlot, and it is amazing how consistent the winery is from year to year. Those folks up in the state of Washington seem to really know what they are doing.

The Indian Wells is a blend of 85% Merlot and 15% Syrah. The Syrah seems to bring out a few earth tones in the wine, which make it robust and smooth at the same time. The nose is powerful, with aromas of cherry, blueberry, and plum. The flavors are concentrated with a predominance of black cherry, highlighted by a touch of blackberry, and a bit of spice. The finish is long with a trace of vanilla flavored oak. The alcohol content is 13.5%.

We had a wonderful meal of medium-rare, grilled lamb chops served with rice and a fresh garden salad. The Indian Wells Merlot was a great companion for this meal, and would also pair well with pasta, or other grilled meats. Norm's score is 90.

Score: 90

Price: $12 - $15

Norm

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