New Hope for Merlot | Bleader

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

New Hope for Merlot

Posted By on 12.19.06 at 11:48 AM

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Poor, maligned merlot, the chardonnay of the '00s. I wonder if Alexander Payne had any idea what he was unleashing when Paul Giamatti first spat, "If anyone orders merlot I'm leaving. I am not drinking any fucking merlot!"  The Sideways Effect came swiftly: within months of the release of the 2004 film demand for pinot noir--the varietal beloved by Giamatti's nebbishy wine dork Miles--were through the roof and merlot sales were in a slump. Now, though, the New York Times argues that this may not have been such a bad thing, if depressed demand for the soft, plummy reds means the ones that make it (like some Washington State wines mentioned in the piece) tend to be pretty good. 

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