Chateau Ste Michelle merlot at Bertucci’s

14 05 2012

Continuing with our delicious Italian restaurant samplings, today we review a 2007 merlot from Washington’s Columbia Valley that Bertucci’s sells for $8.25 a glass / $32 a bottle.  It was paired with their Garlic & Herb Roasted Mushrooms and Warm Assorted Olives.
 
OK this wine caused a stir — everyone at our table loved it, almost couldn’t get enough of it.  Like most Washington merlots, it’s on the sweet side.  But then there’s that leather.  Blackberry.  Spice.  Licorice.  And a touch of oak and black pepper.   By itself, Chateau Ste Michelle merlot is good but not perfect, with a bit of harshness.  But with food, it’s a different and much better story. 
 
Our hosts paired it with a fascinating dish: roasted mushrooms and warm Mediterranean olives.  I don’t know where Bertucci’s is sourcing these items, but somebody in that organization deserves a gold medal.  Absolutely delicious and original.  And, a drop-dead perfect pairing with this merlot.  I am jonesing for a repeat of this course!
 
Chateau Ste Michelle merlotRecommended.

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2 responses

14 05 2012
Susann McKenna

Why would you pay $32 a bottle when you can get it at a liquor store for around$12?

14 05 2012
wineguider

A fair question! And it applies to any wine, at any restaurant. In this case, I would say that you go to the restaurant to experience this pairing. Or, to experience the CSM merlot with one of their excellent brick oven pizzas, which is also a party in your mouth, IMHO. Along with the ambiance, service, and a nice night out. Or, get the food “to-go”, allowing your suggestion to be realized.
Cheers!

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