Producer: Barefoot Cellars
Average Retail Price: $5
Taste (1 = lowest 10=highest): 8
Snobby Wine Words: A surprisingly complex tasting experience. Initial notes of cherries and blackberries, with a short, sweet yet tart finish.
Drink When: You’re home alone on a Saturday night because Hubby is out at a poker game, and the kids have been busting your chops all day, and your mother keeps calling to ask what your plans are for Thanksgiving 2027 because she needs to order her turkey NOW, and so you’re just going to pull on your old college sweatshirt, camp out on the couch, and watch some reruns of “Buffy” while attacking that tub of Nutella you hid at the back of the cabinet so no one else would find it – the BIG tub.
Barefoot Merlot is a gem of the wine world – a cheap merlot that actually tastes good. It won’t shove giant fruit down your gullet like so many other California merlots, but it’s not so spicy or dry that you can’t chug it down to make the pain go away. It’s just super mellow with a slightly sweet aftertaste, kind of like when your favorite Barry Manilow song comes on your iPod followed by your favorite Beyonce song.
I like to buy Barefoot Merlot by the magnum for times when my lawyer husband has a major project at work and will be staying late at the office for days, if not weeks, at a time. It’s my go-to comfort wine that way. Even without a fancy-shmancy vacuum seal for the bottle this wine keeps very well for several days after opening, making it perfect to have on hand for blizzards, hurricanes, and other events in which you have to hunker down at home without leaving for days.
The Barefoot brand in general is pretty reliable, but of all their reds I recommend their merlot the most because it’s the easiest to drink and the most versatile for nearly every wine palette. It won’t overwhelm your dinner or taste weird with chocolate, and it’s easy to drink by yourself itself. In the dark. After you’ve turned off your phone and sent the kids to bed.