This French Vin De Pays has a nice--though a tad lighter--color than a typical Syrah though the bouquet on opening is bright cherries even if faint. In the mouth, it is weak, steely, or minerally and “hot.”
This wine needs to be breathed about 45 minutes. The bouquet opens up to a nice berry rich fruit-filled bouquet with hints of chocolate. In the mouth there is chocolate and dark berries with chewy tannins though a bit thin all the way around and still hot.
I remember thinking to myself I might pick up a bottle of this if I see it but I can’t remember why. At any rate, at $9, it is a change from the typical fruit forward-taste-alike-new world wines that get boring. There’s better out there for the price but all in all, this French offering isn’t bad. (Wine Spectator gives it a generous 85)
On a side note, France is going through a traumatic reevaluation of their whole wine industry and place in the world. They are now planning to convert much of their excess wine into alcohol for adding to gasoline. Why do they have so much excess wine? Simply–because of their politics.
American purchase of French wine since 9-11 is way down and although France is trying to beef up their reputation and status by labeling their wines differently (by putting the grape type on the label for example) I am not sure they understand the real issues responsible for their dismal sale of wine in the United States. Until they do, tweaking their labels is like putting lipstick on a gorilla; I’m still not going to kiss one... Raise a glass!