Merlot is most famously blended in the Bordeaux region of France, with the other permitted grapes Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Malbec, and Petit Verdot. Merlot has loose bunches with large berries, and generally higher sugar levels with lower malic acid levels (this is the last acid present in grapes to diminish when they are ripening). Hence, Merlot is characterised as being juicy and as having the propensity to over ripen. It is possible to produce outstanding single varietal wines that are full of expression. Often growers will harvest early to retain acid. However, the product of careful blending can potentially achieve a sublime wine, with the Merlot component supplying opulent fruit and finesse to the wine.