A good example of a low-cost CDR is M. Chapoutier Belleruche Cotes du Rhone 2009 ($12.99). This 80/20 Grenache/Syrah blend is a beauty! Pull the cork and you’ll find hints of strawberry and raspberries, along with pepper. Taste it and you’ll be amazed at its roundness. There are blackberry flavors, hints of smoke and cedar, good acidity, and subtle vanilla undertones.
This bad boy is big, spicy, and an excellent choice to drink with meats off the grill, roasts, cassoulet, and rich braised foods. It's very versatile and, by the way, it is biodynamically produced, as well.