Though in recent years it has come to play second fiddle to Cabernet Sauvignon, Washington Merlot remains among the state’s most important wines. As recently as 2004, Merlot was Washington’s No. 1 red wine grape. Since then, the Cab craze has left its mark, with Merlot production now at 10,000 fewer tons per year than Cabernet Sauvignon.

But this does not mean Merlot is not important. In fact, Washington winemakers continue to craft superb and often suave examples of the supple red wine. Here are a dozen delicious examples of Washington Merlots we’ve tasted in recent week…Read on at Great Northwest Wine