Best Merlot Wines For Under $50

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Mondot

by Troplong Mondot
2018 / 750 ml.

Item #: 94240

JS93+93–94 pts. - JamesSuckling.com - Thursday, April 11, 2019
A really sexy second wine from Troplong with black cherries and stone. Medium to full body, firm and silky tannins and an attractive finish. (James Suckling)
JD92+92–94 pts. - Jeb Dunnuck - May 1, 2019
The second wine of Troplong Mondot, the 2018 Troplong Mondot Mondot come mostly from designated parcels and is 100% Merlot. It shows the new style of this estate beautifully and offers remarkable purity in its black raspberry and cassis fruits as well as complex notes of white flowers, violets, and spice. Medium-bodied, silky, and beautifully balanced, it has a terrific floral quality as well as ultra-fine tannins, no hard edges, and an attractive, chalky minerality on the finish. (Jeb Dunnuck)
VN90+90–93 pts. - Vinous - Apr 2019
The 2018 Mondot, 100% Merlot, is a fabulous second wine. Rich and luscious to the core, the 2018 is brisk and vibrant, with remarkable nuance and tons of saline-infused energy. Floral and spice notes add perfume to red cherry/plum fruit. Half of the wine comes from Troplong Mondot itself and the other half is sourced from two adjacent parcels that may in time be incorporated into the estate. Look for Mondot to be one of the stars among Bordeaux’s more affordable 2018s. Readers should note that Mondot is sold only as a finished wine and not en primeur. More than anything else, in 2018 Mondot is flat-out delicious.
RP89+89–91 pts. - Robert Parker’s The Wine Advocate - 23rd Apr 2019
The 2018 Mondot is 100% Merlot; 50% comes from the estate and 50% from the new parcels. Deep garnet-purple colored, it springs from the glass with bright, vibrant red plums, fresh blackberries and kirsch scents followed by notions of wild blueberries, cracked black pepper, underbrush and damp soil with a waft of lavender. Medium to full-bodied, the palate delivers loads of crunchy red and black fruit, with rounded tannins and plenty of herbal and red fruit sparks lifting the finish.
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Primary Grape: Merlot

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VN9696 pts. - Vinous - Jan 2019
Readers will find a rich, flamboyant wine in the 2016 Barde-Haut. There is not a ton of subtlety here, but I am not sure that matters all that much given how immensely pleasing the 2016 is. Crushed rocks, graphite, lavender, blackberry, plum, and violet infuse a Saint-Émilion that offers tremendous textural richness as well as vibrancy. Most importantly of all, the 2016 is flat-out delicious. This is a decidedly opulent, dark Saint-Émilion with all of the elements impeccably balanced. I loved it.
JD95+95+ pts. - Jeb Dunnuck - 3/28/2020
Lastly, the 2016 Château Barde-Haut might end up being the best wine ever made at this address from the Garcin-Lévêque family, and it certainly ranks with the crème de la crème of the vintage. Dense purple-hued with awesome notes of cassis, black cherries, spring flowers, damp earth, and violets, it hits the palate with incredible purity and precision, a deep, multi-dimensional texture, sweet tannins (from ripe fruit, not sugar), and a building sense of minerality that shows on the finish. It has the depth of fruit and elegance to shine even today yet will benefit from 3–5 years of bottle age and evolve for two decades. (Jeb Dunnuck)
JD94+94+ pts. - Jeb Dunnuck - February 28, 2019
Incorporating 20% Cabernet Franc, the Merlot-dominated 2016 Château Barde Haut is one of the darker colored wines in the lineup. It offers a Grand Cru Burgundy-like purity and elegance as well as beautiful cassis and darker fruits, smoked earth, black cherries, and damp earth aromas and flavors. This medium to full-bodied, balanced, yet tight, backward, pure effort needs a solid 5–7 years of cellaring to round into form, but it’s beautifully balanced and packed with potential. (Jeb Dunnuck)
JS93+93–94 pts. - JamesSuckling.com - Tuesday, April 4, 2017
Lots of blueberry and blackberry character here. Medium to full body, firm and silky tannins and a savory finish. Should develop beautifully. Exciting young wine.
RP93+93+ pts. - Robert Parker’s The Wine Advocate - 29th Mar 2019
The 2016 Barde Haut is composed of 80% Merlot and 20% Cabernet Franc. Deep garnet-purple colored, it gives up expressive wild blueberries, kirsch, baked plums and spice box notes with hints of cracked pepper, lavender, garrigue and Provence herbs. Medium to full-bodied and richly fruited in the mouth, the palate bursts with blue fruits, framed by firm, rounded tannins and seamless freshness, finishing long.

France | Bordeaux | Saint-Emilion

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Primary Grape: Merlot

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Ca’Marcanda Promis

2021 / 750 ml.

Item #: 603

Italy | Tuscany | Toscana

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Primary Grape: Merlot

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Rombauer Napa Valley Merlot

2019 / 750 ml.

Item #: 608

JS9191 pts. - JamesSuckling.com - Tuesday, April 4, 2023
Aromas of ripe cherries and red plums with red licorice, mocha and wet stones. Medium- to full-bodied with polished tannins and chalky texture. Fresh mix of red and dark fruit on the mid-palate, with a juicy finish and notes of savory herbs at the end. Drink or hold. (James Suckling)
WE9191 pts. - Wine Enthusiast - 4/1/2023
Clear, direct fruit flavors such as red cherries and cranberries are nicely framed in moderate tannins and balanced acidity, while spicy accents of clove and cedar weave in as you sip. Delicious and enjoyable through at least 2027. (Jim Gordon)

United States | California | Napa Valley

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Primary Grape: Merlot

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Duckhorn Vineyards Napa Valley Merlot

2021 / 750 ml.

Item #: 1273

United States | California | Napa Valley

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Primary Grape: Merlot

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Château Fleur Cardinale

Saint-Émilion Grand Cru
2020 / 750 ml.

Item #: 1154

JS9696 pts. - JamesSuckling.com - Sunday, May 14, 2023
Attractive aromas of blueberries and mulberries with graphite, dark licorice and crushed stones. Dark chocolate, too. Full-bodied. Impressive quality to the tannin structure that starts gently and glossy and continues to build, gaining power throughout the palate. Deep and dense with a velvety dark-fruited core. Really long, tense and persistent. 77% merlot, 18% cabernet franc and 5% cabernet sauvignon. Try after 2026. (James Suckling)
RP93+93–95 pts. - Robert Parker’s The Wine Advocate - 20th May 2021
Composed of 77% Merlot, 18% Cabernet Franc and 5% Cabernet Sauvignon, with an alcohol of 14.5% and a pH of 3.57, the deep purple-black colored 2020 Fleur Cardinale bursts from the glass with powerful notes of crushed blackberries, stewed black plums and Morello cherries, plus suggestions of star anise, pencil shavings and black truffles. The medium to full-bodied palate is chock-full of softly textured, juicy black fruits, countered by fantastic tension, finishing with great length and loads of earthy layers. (Lisa Perrotti-Brown)
JD9393 pts. - Jeb Dunnuck - 3/29/2023
A solid step up, the Grand Vin 2020 Château Fleur Cardinale checks in as 77% Merlot, 18% Cabernet Franc and 5% Cabernet Sauvignon. This 22.5-hectare estate has been in the Decoster family since 2000 and consists of mostly clay over limestone soils and is located in the Saint-Etienne de Lisse region of Saint-Emilion. From healthy yields of 43 hectoliters per hectare, with malolactic fermentation in tank followed by 13 months in 90% new French oak, it has a juicy, pure, medium to full-bodied style that shows the classic, elegant style of the vintage beautifully. Offering lots of cassis-like fruit, notes of truffly earth, spring flowers, and violets, well-integrated acidity and tannins, and just a beautifully balanced mouthfeel, it’s going to benefit from just 2–4 years of bottle age and will evolve nicely through 2040. It’s another beautiful wine from this estate. (Jeb Dunnuck)
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Primary Grape: Merlot

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Château Grand Mayne

Saint-Emilion Grand Cru
2020 / 750 ml.

Item #: 1356

JD9494 pts. - Jeb Dunnuck - 3/29/2023
I loved the 2020 Château Grand Mayne. This medium to full-bodied, concentrated, incredibly satisfying Saint-Emilion offers up ample mulled red and black fruits, some loamy earth, iron, and dried flower nuances, ripe tannins, and plenty of mid-palate depth. I still think the 2015 is the top vintage, but this is clearly in the same league as the 2015, 2018, and 2019, and it’s going to drink brilliantly over the coming 15–20 years. (Jeb Dunnuck)
RP93+93–95 pts. - Robert Parker’s The Wine Advocate - 20th May 2021
Opaque purple-black in color, the 2020 Grand Mayne slowly unfurls in the glass to reveal gorgeous notions of ripe black plums, dark chocolate-covered cherries and blackberry pie, plus hints of licorice, cracked black pepper and unsmoked cigars with a touch of tree bark. The medium to full-bodied palate is chock-full of rich black fruits, supported by ripe, rounded tannins and just enough freshness, finishing long and beautifully perfumed. (Lisa Perrotti-Brown)
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Primary Grape: Merlot

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Explore Top Merlot Wines For Under $50

Why Choose Merlot Wines?

Merlot wines are known for their soft tannins and rich flavors that are easy to enjoy. They often have tastes of ripe plum, black cherry, and a bit of spice. These wines are great for both beginners and experienced wine lovers who want a smooth drink. Merlot pairs well with a variety of foods, including grilled meats and rich pastas. Our selection of Merlots under $50 includes excellent options from well-known areas and respected producers like Mondot in Saint-Emilion Grand Cru, France, Ca’Marcanda in Toscana, Italy, and Duckhorn and Rombauer in Napa Valley, USA. Enjoy high-quality Merlot without breaking the bank.

Tips for Enjoying Your Merlot Wines

To enjoy Merlot wines fully, serve them at a warm temperature, ideally between 60°F and 65°F. This temperature helps to highlight the rich flavors and smooth textures that Merlot is known for. Pair your Merlot with dishes like roasted meats, hearty pastas, or mushroom-based recipes to enhance both the wine and the food. Feel free to experiment with different food pairings to find your favorite, making each sip of Merlot a delightful experience.

Frequently Asked Questions About Merlot Wines Under $50

Can I find a good Merlot wine under $50?

Absolutely! Merlot is known for its rich, velvety texture and can be surprisingly affordable. For under $50, you can enjoy a variety of Merlot wines that deliver a full-bodied experience with flavors of ripe plum, black cherry, and hints of chocolate. Our selection ensures you get the best value without compromising on taste.

How does the flavor profile of Merlot under $50 compare to more expensive Merlot?

While pricier Merlots might offer a greater complexity and a longer finish, Merlots under $50 still provide a robust flavor profile. These wines typically showcase a harmonious blend of fruit and spice, with enough structure and acidity to make them versatile with food. They are excellent for both everyday enjoyment and special occasions.

Are there any highly rated Merlot wines available for under $50?

Yes, there are! Several Merlots priced under $50 have earned high ratings for their quality and overall drinking pleasure. These wines are praised for their smooth tannins, depth of flavor, and accessibility, making them popular choices among both critics and consumers. Our collection includes top picks that are sure to impress.