The Dracula’s Blood Merlot 2009 is sourced from grapes grown in the Dealu Mare (translates to Big Hill) growing area, which is Romania’s prime wine region, located just south of the Transylvania Mountains. This Merlot is classified DOC-CMD wine which is one of Romania’s better quality levels. You may not be aware of it, but Romania is the 11th largest wine producing country in the world and they have a wine tradition that dates back 6000 years (that seems excessive, but that’s what they say). During the communist times, the government had the wine producers making cheap bulk wine and now that those days are gone they are getting back to making quality wines. The Dracula’s Blood brand is a project put together by Halewood Romania, a British company with holdings in Romania and this is their way to get you to try Romanian wine. The alcohol content is 13.5%.
The color is clear see-thru cherry red. The nose is a little plum, a little cherry, a touch of cinnamon spice, a little smoke and a hint of dark chocolate. Let this wine have some time to open up, I know it is an $8 wine and they are usually “pop the top and drink” wines, but Dracula’s Blood is only selling for eight bucks because Romania is trying to open up the US market. It starts with ripe plum, then herbal tea, followed by Blood orange mixed with black cherry. The mid palate brings some curry spice, pomegranate and a slight bite from the tannins. The acidity is in check and the finish is fairly full and while it does fade quickly it never really goes away.
The Dracula’s Blood Merlot is an 8 dollar wine that you would drink even if it did not have serious Halloween party potential. It is a solid tuesday night wine that is made in more of a European style, it is different from the value priced Merlot’s from California or Chile. But a little different in under $10 wines is a blessing not a curse (so much for the Curse of Dracula) so stake out a place at the bar and savor a glass of Dracula’s BLOOD.