Saturday 2nd of June 2012

La Metropole Rouge

January 16 2012
This Co-op wine comes with a screw top and very flowery label. A definite 'shelf-pleaser' with a striking Toulouse Lautrec style image.

It also claims to be a 'Cuvee Classique', which initially sounds impressive. When you translate 'cuvee' you realise it just means 'vat' or 'tank', and is normally a 'blend' in said 'tank'. The addition of 'classique' hopefully implies a higher quality vat of wine than normal, although there is no regulation on the term cuvee, so you take your chances.

At only £4.99 you are not expecting much, as the margins on wine are so slim these days there is little for the producer to play with to make the wine particularly great....but you may be surprised by this offering.

There are several grape varieties blended in this bottle from Languedoc, Southern France - Syrah, Grenache, Carignan and Cabernet Franc, so lots for the palate to try and detect. I splashed some into a glass and had a generous pre-dinner gulp as I was both thirsty (not drinking enough water) and in need of red wine (I had been without for a couple of days, not I hasten to add in accordance with the governments new drinking advice). So I well and truly saturated my senses with this one. No coming up for air.

I can liken it to being on a giant slide at an adventure park. When you push yourself reluctantly over the edge there is a moment when the ride is a little sticky and awkward before you really get going, but you are soon up and running, ending in exhilaration and the desire for another go. The Old World earthiness of the wine on first swig thankfully gives way to a rich smoothness that is really pleasant. There are obvious, clearly defined components to the taste. A definite everyday sort of wine, a good standby bottle which will please everyone. Worth stashing a few under the stairs.

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