November 7th is International Merlot Day!
For everyone that knows me, I love talking about Merlot. Every wine has a holiday and of course Merlot gets a whole month and a day. You start to enjoy Merlot for the whole month of October and on November 7 we finish it with a bang. #MerlotMe It’s one of those wines that needs a little bit of a push, but when you try it, you will love it. This Past weekend, I was pouring our 2015 Merlot at the Sunset in the Vineyard event at Compa Vineyard in Newhall. Such a wonderful event! Don’t forget to support your local Santa Clarita and Antelope Valley Wineries.
I am a happy to share that I could not believe how many people actually asked for Merlot. Obviously, all the media around the world has obviously helped this varietal. Our 2015 Merlot has not yet been officially released, but it does make an appearance occasionally. If you come in the tasting room, it is available for purchase. This estate Merlot has bold aromas of plum, blackberry and notes of toasted oak, followed by juicy flavors of Satsuma plums with a hint of spice rounding out the finish. It has won a gold medal and received 91 points from the Toast of the Coast wine competition. Supple, velvety tannins and lush fruit make this wine an ideal match for grilled pork chops, Port Salut cheese or roasted plums and vanilla ice cream.
Thinking of food and wine while I am writing makes me want to open a bottle of this delicious Merlot for dinner by enjoying grilled chicken with a plum glaze on top of basmati rice and fresh green beans. Here is my recipe for the plum jelly I use when I glaze my chicken.
4 ½ cups Italian Plums, chopped and pitted
4 cups of sugar
1 lemon, juiced
1 sprig of rosemary
1 package of Sure-jell Certo liquid pectin
1/3 cup of Reyes 2011 Robby’s Blend
- Pour sugar into large pot and cook over medium to high heat.
- When sugar starts to melt and sides of pot, looks like it is a caramel color; add plum, lemon juice, rosemary and pectin.
- When it starts to boil, continue to cook until frothy.
- When the back of the spoon looks like it is sticking to the back. (Take a finger and go down the back of the spoon, if you make a line and it feels thick, it’s done.) Turn off the heat.
- Add Reyes 2011 Robby’s Blend.
- Chill and then Serve.