Everyone knows “I Love Lucy” and if you are from that era, there was a blonde that created even more love, it was Marilyn Monroe. She had an earthy yet vulnerable appeal to men, and she probably still does, at least to this writer. By today’s standards she would be considered heavy compared to a lot of anorexic starlets and she was natural, not enhanced surgically. I mean who can not recall her walking along the train in “Some like It Hot?” Maybe some will consider me a Neanderthal or a Sexist Pig, but I am sorry I grew up seeing her on the silver screen, taken by my parents in my pre-puberty childhood, but I remember how the men and the women of that era would discuss her, and all in the positive. She had a tragic life and died very young.
One Christmas a very good friend of ours was visiting and she knew my penchant for collecting wine labels as well as for drinking wine. She always tries to find something to amuse me, and that we will drink during her stay. That Christmas one of the wines that she brought to our house was a Marilyn Merlot wine, made by the Napa Wine Company. I looked at it and appreciated the label and the kitsch of it all. It was a Merlot wine, and readers may realize by now that I enjoy Merlot wines, whether the rest of the world denigrates them. After all the Merlot varietal is grown around the world and is revered as one of the important grapes in Bordeaux and is even found in some of the “Super Tuscan” wines in Italy. I remember that I thought that here was a wine where the label would be the best part of the bottle, and I thought our friend was daft for buying it, but why look a gift horse or wine in a negative fashion. We were enjoying appetizers and later on dinner and I thought that we should try this wine. My immediate thought was that it would be a passable wine taking advantage of the then hot current in Merlot wines. Was I wrong, we all enjoyed the wine and were very sorry that we only had the one bottle of it, when it was emptied.
Since then, I think we have enjoyed at least one bottle if not more of every vintage since our first introduction to this brand. We even enjoy the Norma Jean line, which is a younger and less aged bottle of Merlot. We have tried the Champagne and the “Sauvignon Blonde” that they offer. They did make a Chardonnay the first year, but dropped it, so I never had it, and they also offere a Meritage wine that was very pricey, that I never got, and the Velvet Collection has on the label, the famous calendar pose, that had a transparent drape that pulled over the label to hide her natural attributes that were revealed in that classic photo. I mean how wonderful is it that I can appreciate a wine two ways at once, and so far always be satisfied.