2010 Wild Horse Central Coast Merlot

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Norm’s Tasting Notes
by: Norm Bentley

The 2010 Wild Horse Merlot formerly know as Paso Robles Merlot, now goes by the label Wild Horse Central Coast Merlot. Since 90% of the grapes in this new vintage were grown in Paso Robles, one might ask, “so what’s in a name?” Not much more than a broader horizon. The Wild Horse Merlot has always been a good solid bottle of wine, and this one is no exception, and since it is 90% the same, then you might say it is just about the same wine. The only difference I noticed, was a touch on the lighter side.

At two years old “The Wine Spectator” scored the 2006 Wild Horse Merlot an 85 with the following comments; “Ripe and zesty, with plum and roasted herb aromas and red currant and exotic Asian spice flavors. Drink now.” A lot of you did. However I tasted a 2006 vintage in 2010, and had the following to say:

“We just had a bottle last night with some wonderful Beef Stroganoff, and my score would be a 90 at this point in its life. It is dark red in color with a nose of black cherry and currant. The flavors are complex with maturity, but have not lost any of their bright fruit zest. The combination of cherry and cassis swril together with the slight presence of spice, and flow into a well rounded finish of mild toasty tannin. So often we consume wine at too early an age, but four years old may be the perfect place in time to enjoy this Merlot.”

The flavors are still pretty much the same in the current vintage, with a lot of cherry and dark berries, and the finish is a mellow toasty oak, after fourteen months in the barrel. We enjoyed a bottle of the 2010 Wild Horse Merlot the other night with a two inch thick, medium rare, New York strip, and it was quite good, but I couldn’t help thinking what it would be like in two more years. Norm’s score now is 87, but it might be higher in two years, if you can wait..

Score: 87
Price: $16 – $19


Norm’s Tasting Notes can also be accessed at his Blog:

Norm’s Tasting Notes available online at either:

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