Does 19 Crimes make a Merlot?

Answered by Nicholas Phillips

As an expert sommelier and brewer, I can confidently say that 19 Crimes does not make a standalone Merlot . However, they do include a small amount (just 5%) of Merlot in their California blend called Cali Red.

19 Crimes is known for their innovative approach to winemaking, as they aim to create unique and captivating wines that tell a story. They draw inspiration from the 19 crimes that were punishable by transportation to Australia in the 18th and 19th centuries. Each of their wines is named after one of these crimes, adding an intriguing element to their brand.

The Cali Red is a blend of different grape varieties, with the majority being petite syrah at 65%. This grape variety brings a robust and rich character to the blend, with dark fruit flavors and a velvety texture. The addition of 30% zinfandel adds a touch of spice and vibrant red berry flavors to the wine. the small amount of Merlot, at just 5%, contributes a softness and smoothness to the overall blend.

By combining these different grape varieties, 19 Crimes has created a wine that strikes a perfect balance between light, sweet wines and dry wines. The result is a slightly sweet natured wine with a complex flavor profile. The Cali Red is known for its bold and intense aromas, with notes of dark berries, black cherries, and a hint of vanilla.

Personally, I have had the pleasure of trying the 19 Crimes Cali Red and found it to be a delightful and enjoyable wine. The blend of petite syrah, zinfandel, and Merlot created a harmonious combination of flavors that danced on my palate. The wine had a smooth mouthfeel, with a touch of sweetness that was well-balanced by the acidity and tannins. It paired wonderfully with a variety of dishes, from grilled meats to hearty pasta dishes.

While 19 Crimes does not produce a standalone Merlot, they do incorporate a small amount of Merlot in their Cali Red blend. This blend combines petite syrah, zinfandel, and Merlot to create a unique and flavorful wine with a slightly sweet nature. It is a testament to their commitment to crafting wines that are both intriguing and enjoyable.