Wine Reviews Tasting Notes and Education for the Non-Snob, by Vino Joe, a Certified Specialist of Wine (CSW)

Merlot Wine Review: Dante

Dante Merlot 2006 · Michael Pozzan Winery

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I have to admit, I purchased this wine based on its label — one of my best friends became a father recently, to a son named “Dante”. So it was an added bonus that the juice behind the label turned out to be pretty good — and well worth the price.

Dante is made by the Michael Pozzan Winery, and ironically (to me, anyway), is named after Michael Pozzan’s eldest son. The wine itself is purportedly inspired by Michael’s trips to Italy — per the the Pozzan website, the wines labeled with “Dante” are: “hearty but approachable wines are reminisant [sic] of your fravorite trattoria in Italy”. At around ten bucks, that’s enough story for me.

I’ve enjoyed the soft, supple, accessible wines from Pozzan for several years, and this bottling fits in with the winery’s style. Unlike other wines from Pozzan, the grapes come from outside Napa — but again, when I’m spending about ten bucks, vineyard location is a moot point. Just give me a decent wine I can enjoy with a simple meal and make me feel like I got my money’s worth. For that, this wine delivers.

Tasting Notes: Dante Merlot

The nose is full of ripe red raspberry, ripe strawberry, and black cherry, with hints of vanilla, spice, earth, and smoke. In the mouth it is borderline jammy upfront, with lots of ripe red berry fruits, vanilla, and white chocolate flavors. The finish is pleasantly tart, with ripe black cherry and red raspberry notes. Acidity is mild to medium, tannins are mild to medium, alcohol is just a touch warm on the finish. All three elements are in good balance with the high fruit level. Enjoyable alone, also good with a variety of foods. Drink it with lean meats, Mexican fare, lean sausage, mild cheeses, vegetarian dishes.

a-8 t-8 b-8 fc-8 v-8 ~ 90 Points

Bottom Line

A soft, warm, approachable Merlot that is enjoyable alone or with simple dishes based on lean meats or mild cheeses. Fine as an everyday drinker and a great value.

Find this wine at a retailer near you using Wine-Searcher, Vinquire, or WineZap

Learn more by visiting the Michael Pozzan Winery website

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