Occasion: Cold weather brings a craving for stews, pot roasts and goulash for warm, comforting meals. At those times, a food wine is needed and Godwin Merlot is a superb one. It is also one of the best deals I have found in a long time. A fully mature and superior merlot from a great vintage in Sonoma, the Godwin Merlot is listed on Wine-Searcher at $40 to $60 anywhere else in the country, but here it is just less than $7, so I cannot tell you enough what a great deal this is.
Wine: Godwin Merlot
Region: Sonoma Valley, Calif.
In the glass: Godwin Merlot is a deep semi-opaque blood-ruby-red color with a nice firm core going out into a light crimson to brick-red rim definition with high viscosity.
On the nose: There are freshly crushed red and black berry fruits with blueberry sorbet, blackberry jam, soft toffee, mocha, vanilla, oak references, loganberries, licorice twizzlers and hints of minerals.
On the palate: The wine is opulent with crushed berry fruit, especially blueberries and raspberries, blackberry liqueur, then good symmetry between the fruit and tannins, appearing soft and supple through the midpalate with just a little extra kick of black fruit and crushed star anise toward the lovely lingering finish. It has a real freshness to it, which is a nice quality for a wine of this stature. It is throwing slight sedimentation at this point, but it does not affect the taste. The wine also features an impressive heavy bottle.
Availability: Lee’s Discount Liquor
Gil Lempert-Schwarz’s wine column appears on Wednesdays. Write him at P.O. Box 50749, Henderson, NV 89106-0749, or email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.