With so many grape varieties being cultivated for the purpose of making wines, it is natural for people to be confused or ignorant about the main distinctive characteristics of similar wines. One such pair is of Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot wines. Both of these are red wine varietals which are cultivated in all major wine regions around the globe, including Australia. If someone is not an expert wine lover, the differences between the two are not known to many. Since people would like to know how is Cabernet Sauvignon different from Merlot before buying these, let us highlight the essential points of difference between the two:
Cabernet Sauvignon comes with a peppery flavour mixed with currant. This will pinch your tongue a little when tasted. In effect, Merlot is sweeter than Cabernet but it just relative and there is no sugary sweetness as such in either of them. And, it does take quite a bit of time to go off. But, Merlot will be cherry flavoured and a lot smoother than Cab Sav in taste and it also takes less time to wade off. There are higher tannin levels in Cab Sav than in Merlot which makes it a lot bolder than the latter.
It is true that Cabernet Sauvignon is more popular and sold more than Merlot. This makes it a good gift item. Another important factor which makes it a good gift item is the fact that it ages well. Being an age-worthy wine, this makes it an item to store for years ahead. This is not the case with Merlot which is consumed young.
Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon wines are generally paired with different types of meals. This is again because of their properties. Merlot is generally had with lighter meals and Cab Sav with heavier meals.