M. Chapoutier, Côtes du Rhône (Rhône Valley, France) “Belleruche” 2021 

($15, Folio Fine Wine Partners):  Chapoutier is one of the top producers in the Rhône, so it’s no surprise that this mid-weight red Côtes du Rhône of theirs is easy to recommend.  It displays a balanced and marvelous mixture of black and red fruits, offset by herbal elements that lend a savory touch.  Mild tannins lend support but are hardly noticeable and certainly don’t detract from its suave texture.  Given its price and overall ready-to-drink profile, it’s a good choice for large or even small groups feasting on grilled food this summer.  Wedding caterers would be wise to stock this widely available crowd-pleaser as opposed to much of the insipid stuff they usually serve.
89 Michael Apstein Jul 18, 2023