Wine of the Week #1 – 2010 Marius White (France)

Wine of the Week is a new idea I’m trying out.  Each week I’ll share with you a reasonably priced gem that I’ve found among the thousands of wines available at Kentucky’s wine retailers.  The only requirement of these wines is that they are well-made, reasonably priced, and tasty!  Let me know what you think.

2010 M. Chapoutier Marius White

France > Languedoc Roussillon > Vin de Pays d’Oc

Purchaed From: Liquor Barn ($12) – also spotted at WineStyles and Corner Wine

Backstory:

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The words “inexpensive” and “France” aren’t often found found together in the wine world.  Even when they are, the guidance of a wine pro is almost a necessity as so many of the value-priced wines exported from France are… well…. crap.

Having said that, let me introduce you to Marius.  A two-year-old value brand made by one of the Rhone Valley’s best, and most outspoken winemakers, Michel Chapoutier.  The wines of Chapoutier often command price tags in excess of $100, but in honor of his grandfather, he decided to launch the Marius line of more affordable line of wines, after whom they are named.

My Take:

The Marius white was incredibly enjoyable.  It had a clear straw yellow color, with aromas of apples, peaches and hints of citrus.  It was slightly dry, but not too acidic, a little flinty, and I swear I tasted caramelized apples.  The finish was very clean and refreshing, with more of the apple notes and even a bit of cinnamon.  It was well-balanced, with the tannin a little more pronounced on the finish.  If you like Sauvignon Blanc or dry Rieslings, you’ll really enjoy this one.

Food: We drank this with Cajun-seasoned chicken, green beans and a basic green salad and it worked pretty well.  This would also be great with seafood or cream-based dishes.

Technical Stuff: 

The wine is a blend of Vermentino (more commonly found in Italy) and Terret (a popular French grape, often used to make Vermouth).  While the Pays d’Oc region of France, where this wine is produced, is known for inexpensive French table wines, the Marius is of unusually good quality.  Alcohol: 12.5%

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