- a popular black grape variety used to produce red wines in many different regions around the world. The wines are rich, fruity, and often with blackcurrant flavours. The grape is used as the foundation for some of the great red wines of the Bordeaux region of southwestern France such as Saint-Émilion and Pomerol, and in Bordeaux-style wines around the world. Merlot grapes have a thinner skin and more sugar than Cabernet Sauvignon and so produce softer red wine with a higher alcohol content. The grape is unrelated to Merlot Blanc.