Yellow Tail Merlot

It's Red It's Cheap It's a Pass


Not Good Booze –  Not Worth It

Compared to other reds we’ve reviewed including another Yellow Tail, this one is so modest it fades into nothing. It’s not bad, but it’s just a simple generic red with Merlot printed on the label. For some that may be enough given the price. We hit it with every combination in our tasting protocol kit and if you were going to drink it, the best result came from pouring it right out into a larger Cabernet glass. Some berry flavors linger for a bit but It does not get better with time and air. Not at all.

The Facts

Yellow Tail Merlot

Price Paid – $5.99

Date Reviewed – 2/1/18

Where Purchased – Safeway SF Bay Area

Varietal or Type – Merlot

Vintage Year – 2016 (Australia*)

Appellation – Australia

Winery/Brand – Yellow Tail/Casella Family Brands

Bottle Size – 750 ML

Alcohol – 13%

Cork? – Artificial

Pour it and taste – Two Ways –

– Std. Red Wine Glass: Tar and some Berry in the nose. Some berry and cherry flavors. soft tannins and a medicinal edge to the finish.

– Large Cabernet Glass): Tar nose. Smooth Berry flavors and zero tannins. Smooth finish with a bit of berry. A bit thin.

Aerator plus 5 minutes – Two Ways –

– Std. Red Wine Glass: Tar still present, but less. Bit of berry flavor, thin body with a medicinal finish.

– Large Cabernet Glass: A hint of tar in the nose. Some berries and soft tannins. Bit of a medicinal finish. Thin.

Decanter plus 30 minutes – Two Ways –

– Std. Red Wine Glass: Now a generic “red wine”. Thin. Without character.

– Large Cabernet Glass: Some tar in the nose. A tiny suggestion of fruit flavors. Small tannins a the end.

Overall – This is a very modest red wine. It does have that magic word Merlot on the label, that might be enough to please some indifferent drinkers given the price. But, it’s thin, the flavors are whispy and it’s just not a wine with interest even as a party wine. Not terrible, just not worth the drinking given other choices.

* Harvests in the Southern Hemisphere are six months earlier than in the US and France. The benefit is a wine “older” than the vintage year would indicate which is an added bonus in this price range. A bit more time in the bottle is a good thing.

Copyright 2018 Chandelle of Sonoma, Inc. All Rights Reserved

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