Cape Diamond 2002 Oregon Merlot ($12.99)
My local retailer tells me that this new label is made by Ken Wright, an Oregon wine maker whose name is one to conjure with when it comes to Pinot Noir. Performing well above its price point, this Merlot shows dark ruby in color, with reddish glints in the glass. Ripe cherries meet spicy oak in the aroma; juicy and fresh, mouth-watering fruit flavors seem soft at first, but build ample fresh-fruit acidity for structure as the wine crosses the palate. Well balanced and appealing, a fine table wine. US Importer: (Feb 8, 2004)

FOOD MATCH: An excellent match against the simple accompaniment of roast free-range chicken.

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