Cathal McBride on wine: The crown may have slipped, but Merlot maintains its nobility

This fruity and velvety grape should be placed on the high pedestal it deserves

Merlot, the most widely planted grape in Bordeaux, stands shoulder to shoulder with the giants of the wine world. Picture: Getty

There’s always one child in the family who is ever present, considerate, helpful and reliable. If that child was a grape, merlot would be it. Yet, while it’s as dependable in blends as in single varietals, I can’t shake the sense that merlot has somehow drifted into the same space in the subconscious of the casual wine drinker as chardonnay. As with the latter, a host of substandard expressions may have created apathy among the ...