What is the Difference Between Malbec VS Merlot?

Malbec VS Merlot

The Malbec and the Merlot are two popular brands of wine that have stood the test of time, survived crop failure and been blended into perfection. Both of these wines are synonymous with class and elegance, but what are their differences? Which is better?

We have put down this guide to answer these questions and much more.

What Is Malbec?

Malbec VS Merlot
Malbec Wine

Malbec is an acidic, full-bodied, deep purple red wine with multiple juicy fruity flavors such as blackberries and plums. This wine is predominantly produced in Argentina and other parts of South America. However, it has several different names depending on where you are in the world, like Côt Noir, Auxerrois or Pressac.

Is Malbec dry or sweet?

The Malbec is a red wine that is often considered dry, with medium to medium-full body, and is usually perfect for pairing with lean meat.

Where is Malbec produced?

Today, Malbec can be found growing mostly in Argentina and France, but also in a number of other regions, including California.

  • Argentina is the primary source of Malbec wine. This red wine is practically used and recognized everywhere in Argentina. It is quite popular among residents, and the people of Argentina have dedicated their lives and resources to the production of this wine.
  • France is the second largest producer of Malbec wine, although when compared to Argentina, it is still far behind. It is also worth noting that the wine is now sold alone, but is still being used in other wine blends.
  • Next on the list would be California. The state grows Malbec widely in several of its regions.
  • Other regions include small pockets in Italy, New Zealand, South Africa, Canada, Mexico, and Bolivia.

What Does Malbec Taste Like?

Malbec is commonly known for its fruity, yet jammy taste paired with a strong kick. Some of the common flavors include:

  • Molasses
  • Tobacco
  • Cocoa
  • Dark fruits such as: raisins, blueberries, black cherries, plums, and pomegranates.
  • Coffee
  • Leather
  • Black Pepper
  • Gravel

Is Malbec the healthiest wine?

The grape skins of Malbec are among the thickest of all grape varieties. This implies they are high in the antioxidant resveratrol, which is excellent for your heart and immune system. Malbec contains four times the merlot’s antioxidant level and almost doubles the Cabernet Sauvignon‘s antioxidant content.

What Is Merlot?

Malbec VS Merlot
Merlot Wine

Merlot is a blue grape wine that is perfect on its own or mixed into blends. Wines made out of 100% pure merlot grapes often produce the perfect, deep velvet, full-bodied red wine. This wine is perfect for first-time drinkers or white wine lovers who want to try out red wine.

Where is Merlot produced?

Merlot has spread globally, and now it is the most widely grown grape variety in the world. Here are a few major places it is produced.

  • Merlot is still cultivated and produced in France, mostly in the Bordeaux region, for use in Bordeaux blends as well as for solo drinking. France, on the other hand, continues to be the leading producer, accounting for two-thirds of global merlot production and dedicating nearly 300,000 acres to the grape.
  • Merlot production in Italy is concentrated in the Friuli region of northern Italy and Tuscany, though merlot is used in Italian blends to a significant extent.
  • Merlot is cultivated in Spain/Portugal, Europe, the United States, Canada, South America, South Africa, and Asia, among other places. In the United States, Merlot is most commonly found in California and Washington State.

The main ingredient in Merlot

Merlot is made from red-skinned grapes, also called merlots. These grapes are known for their soft, juicy, sensual texture and natural flavors. These grapes are also capable of adapting to various climates and producing a variety of different types of food-friendly wines that have different price ranges. As a result of the different varieties, Merlot can be rich and oaky, velvety or plummy.

What does Merlot taste like?

Merlot has a flavor that is similar to cherries and chocolate. It has moderate tannins and will not dry out your palate. Merlot, like Pinot Noir, is a light, versatile red that goes well with almost any dish, including pizza, lasagna, and cheeseburgers.

How Are Malbec Vs Merlot Similar? What is the Difference?

As seen above, Malbec and Merlot are both traditional red wines that basically have similar origins. Both wines are also spread around the world due to crop failure. Due to this crop failure, both wines were able to achieve the perfect blend of taste, making this wine a prized blend.

Both wines are also considered as dry red wines, with both pairing well with lean meats and recognized as medium to medium-full-bodied wines. But though they have several things in common, there are a few differences between the two.

The major differences between Malbec and Merlot are:

  • The Malbec wine is mainly produced in the wine regions of Argentina and France, while the Merlot is produced in France, Spain, and Italy.
  • Merlot is a dryer wine than Malbec, which only has a medium level of dryness.
  • The Malbec is a lot more full-bodied, but you can find the Merlot at a cheaper price, just a different variety.
  • The Malbec has a smoky, jammy flavor, while the Merlot tastes like fruit flavors, chocolates and bay leaf.

Which is better, merlot or malbec?

Because of its low tannins, Malbec has a silky taste and an excellent, smooth finish. After each sip of pure Malbec with no additives, a smoky flavor lingers on the tongue. Malbec has a high level of tannins and a low level of acidity, making it excellent for those who prefer dry red wines. Merlot, on the other hand, is frequently fruitier. The wine is selected depending on the palate, the occasion, and the food that will be served with it.

Merlot’s dry, chilly flavor reflects the environment in which the grapes used to create it thrive. The appeal of Merlot stems from its ability to take on new flavors when mixed with different grape varietals. Merlot and Cabernet, for example, form an excellent pairing. Merlot is a wine that is simple to drink. This sweeter varietal may appeal to casual wine drinkers. It has a smooth, creamy aftertaste because of the thin peel of the grapes used to create it. The thin skin allows more light to enter the fruit, resulting in a sweeter pulp.

Even inexperienced wine consumers are aware that red wine is a legendary match with meat meals. Both Malbec and Merlot wines may be a good match for a steak meal. Merlots with a lighter body are ideal for a laid-back supper of pasta, pizza, or lamb chops. For a great balance, pair a medium-bodied Merlot with delicious steak meals garnished with strong veggies.

All in all, the better wine is dependent on your preference.



 Although, there are certain differences between the Malbec VS Merlot, the choice of which is better greatly depends on preferences and what the wine will be used for. But with all of these, we can say both wines are indeed splendid blends that provide great satisfaction for your palate.

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