Fifth Annual Merlot Month Celebrates Noble Grape this October
September 20, 2017
Napa, Calif. – September 21, 2017 – Beginning October 1, 2017 more than 100 Merlot-producing wineries from California, Oregon, Washington, and around the world, join together for #MerlotMe, a month-long, global movement celebrating the noble variety.
MerlotMe unites passionate wine lovers in a worldwide movement to celebrate this lavishly textured, dazzling versatile noble red grape varietal. Millions of wine lovers across the globe will celebrate Merlot online during October with hashtag #MerlotMe, and tasting and toasting at events, in wine stores, restaurants and homes.
Last year’s #MerlotMe celebration generated more than 33 million social media impressions and reached a worldwide audience in 32 countries. The 2017 #MerlotMe movement features Merlot-themed events and initiatives online, in homes, in restaurants and at retailers across the US and beyond. Participating wineries, restaurants and retailers will feature #MerlotMe inspired tasting flights, food bloggers are posting Merlot-paired recipes and chatting online with hashtag #WinePairingWeekend, spotlighting the food-friendly nature of the varietal. Winery tasting rooms including Duckhorn Vineyards, Rombauer Vineyards, Rutherford Hill in Napa Valley, J Lohr in San Jose and Paso Robles, L’Ecole 41 in Washington’s Walla Walla region and more offer flights, reserve and library pours and special pricing on select Merlots with a mention of #MerlotMe (or not!).
Merlot is one of the most popular fine wine varieties in the world with more than 720,000 acres planted worldwide. Merlot is the third leading red varietal after Cabernet Sauvignon and Red Blends purchased by Americans today in California wine shipments. California Merlot consumption was approximately 17 million cases in 2016 in the U.S.*, up dramatically from 2.8 million cases sold in 1994. Luxury Merlot over $20 grew 5 percent in the last year in U.S. retail channels**, and Merlot is one of the top four most important red wines in U.S. restaurants, along with Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinot Noir & Bordeaux Blends***. Merlot is the most widely planted grape in France, with more than 280,000 acres. According to Wine Searcher, two of the most expensive Merlot wines in the world are Chateau Pétrus and Chateau le Pin from Bordeaux, both of which sell for an average of $3,000 per bottle and are comprised of 70-100% Merlot.
Visit www.merlotme.com for more information on events, recipes, participating wineries, materials for the wine trade, and how to #MerlotMe. Join #MerlotMe on Twitter @merlotmeplease, Instagram @merlotme, and Facebook MerlotMeOfficialPage
*Source: The Wine Institute
**Source: Nielsen IRI 52-week data ending 8/13/17
***Source: Winemetrics 2016 US Fine Dining & Luxury Wine On-Premise Distribution Report