wwwbwLadies and gentlemen…after a month or so of promoting World Wide Wine Blogging Wednesday (WWWBW), it’s finally here! I’m hopefully that we’ll have a great turnout for the theme of inexpensive New World Merlot that is not from the United States and costs $15 or less!

As the vinter of this new blogging event, I felt a certain pressure to come up with a spectacular example. And, while my wine was above average, I wouldn’t characterize it as spectacular.

trumpmerlot2003My wine was Trumpeters Merlot 2003 from Bodega La Rural, Argentina. I picked this one up on one of my always-fun wine shopping sprees at Costco of all places…for $6. The 2002 got an 86 (I think) from Wine Spectator…so I thought it would be pretty good.

The official tasting notes read:
Blackberry and cinnamon aromas give way to ripe flavors of cherry and red currant. The richness of fruit gives this wine a soft texture with supple tannins. An excellent food wine.

As for my own notes, I agree 100% with the blackberry aromas, but I didn’t get any of the cinnamon. Instead, I picked up on a slight oakiness that rounded out the fruit on the nose. The wine was rather dark in the glass, purple and juicy…lacking the ruby redness of many Merlots.

With my first sip, I was pleasantly surprised with the richness of this wine. At its price, you sometimes get weak, lifeless wines. This one was soft (as the notes suggested) but the cherry and slightly earthy character lingered on my palate…call it a moderate finish. Not long, but it didn’t disappear on my tongue either, holding on with an almost sweet spiciness that was nice.

It paired fairly well with our dinner of a spicy, southwest-inspired chicken salad, but it wasn’t a perfect pairing. It would have been near perfect with a charbroiled burger.

Overall, this is a gulpable wine with a bit more character than your average 6-dollar Merlot. Worth a shot with grilled meats, but definitely not what you want if you’re looking for an elegant pour.

I can’t wait to read all of your posts…don’t forget to email me or leave a comment with a link to your post!