About Red Meritage Red Wine

About Red Meritage Red Wine
Meritage (rhymes with "heritage") is a term coined in California to describe a blended wine made with Bordeaux varieties. While there could be a white Meritage, the term generally refers to a red wine, thus made with any combination of five grapes: Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Petit Verdot and Cabernet Franc.

Established in the 1980s, the concept of Meritage wines was initially greeted with a good deal of fanfare, but today, that excitement has waned. Most of the 100 plus wineries that make a Meritage-style wine are in California; many do not even use the term on the label, preferring their own fantasy name.

Meritage red wines age similarly to a full-bodied Cabernet Sauvignon and are best paired with red meats and game.

Top Picks for Red Meritage

Fazeli Cellars 2014 Meritage Temecula Valley
93 points
$42
Garnet color. Aromas of red cassis, cured meats, aniseed, and fine cider with a dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a complex, long leather, savory spices, and hazelnut finish. Fine balance and alluring aromas made for a stately Meritage blend; enjoy now or cellar.
M Cellars 2016 Meritage Reserve Grand River Valley
89 points
$50
Garnet color. Aromas and flavors of coconut layer bar, beets, au jus, and rose tea with a vibrant, dry-yet-fruity medium-full body and an engaging, medium-long finish displaying touches of cranberry relish. A distinctive red from Ohio; a conversation-starting choice for steaks.
Outlander 2017 Meritage Red Blend Paso Robles
88 points
$7.49
Best Buy
Dusty deep purple color. Fruity aromas and flavors of currants, sweet potato, sage, ripe blackberry, and licorice with a supple, crisp, fruity medium body and an appealing, medium-length finish displaying notes of chocolate chips with moderate oak flavor. A sturdy and balanced red Meritage with lots of layers to discover.
88 points $7.49 Best Buy
M Cellars 2017 Meritage Grand River Valley
86 points
$30
Garnet color. Aromas and flavors of red plum, leather, clove incense, violet candies, and roasted vegetables with a crisp, fruity medium-to-full body and an interesting, medium-length finish imparting elements of caramelized nuts. A toothsome red with lots of nuance; give this some time.
Falkner 2015 Special Selection Meritage California
86 points
$59.95
Garnet color. Aromas of plum, earth, and figs with a racy, fruity medium body and a brisk chocolate, baking spices, and honey-herb muffin finish. An dry and sturdy red with racy acidity; well-suited to the table.
86 points $59.95