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Term protected by wine law in California (merit = value) for cuvées to declare a quality feature over varietals (varietal wines). The name was determined in a competition in 1988. The blending methods (blend of grape varieties) are based on Bordeaux. There is a "Red Meritage", which corresponds to the Bordeaux blend, and a "White Meritage"(Sémillon, Sauvignon Blanc and some Muscadelle), as is customary in Sauternes. There is also a production limit of a maximum of 300,000 bottles per year when this designation is used. A designation of origin is Generic.

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