The Merlot grape variety is one of the most cultivated in the world. We have about half a million hectares in the Iberian Peninsula for the production of red wines and this is one of the most popular varieties (not as much as Tempranillo or Garnacha, but at the level of Cabernet Sauvignon, with which it shares its origin in the French region of Bordeaux, in the southwest of the country).
Morphological characteristics of the Merlot grape variety
Strains of this variety give clusters of medium size, conical, loose and elongated. The berries are uniform, bluish-black in color (hence the name merlot, derived from "blackbird" in the Bordelian dialect, the dark plumage of this bird), spherical or slightly elongated, thick skin and non-pigmented pulp , consistent and juicy.
The variety of Merlot vine adapts to different types of soils, but prefers argillic-calcareous. It benefits the cool climates and is not adapted to the drought. The debris is early, which makes it sensitive to spring frosts. Maturation is from early to medium, shortly after tempranillo. It is quite sensitive to mildew and leafhoppers and resistant to powdery mildew and wood diseases.
It produces varietal wines of intense coloration, round, with body, with moderate alcoholic load, fruity aromas and relatively little acidity. They are wines that do not need a lot of aging time, are usually consumed as young reds and are easy to drink. They are usually mixed with Cabernet Sauvignon wines to provide lightness.
The Merlot grape variety, of French origin, has very good qualities, both in cultivation and in the elaboration of pleasant and fruity wines, and for that reason it has become a very widespread grape all over the world, also in our country.
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