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What Makes A Popular Wine?

Jeudi 28 Mai 2020

There are some wines that just hit the spot. Why?

What Makes A Popular Wine?
What makes a popular wine? Price can obviously be a factor. Marketing can make a huge difference to mass-produced wines. Remember how "Les Français adorent le Piat d'Or" in the 1980s? The French had never heard of it. Or Mateus Rosé with it's nice bottle that ended up with a candle in it on half of the tables in the UK? For this type of product the wine has to be drinkable but no more.But for a small retailer like us who only deals in independent, local wines, we need to rely on something else. Gimmicks won't work. The wine has to be good obviously. But every now and again a wine comes along that defies all normal criteria. People try it once and keep coming back for it. Again and again. This is the case with a wine from a small domain in Roujan. Around 5 years ago, Ina and I were eating in a restaurant (remember those?). We took the tasting menu, and as our companions were friends of the chef, we got to try out all sorts of wines with each course. Eventually he brought out a wine which had only just been released. A Syrah, made by a friend of his who was a retired French rugby international. As soon as we tried it we knew that we had found something special. The wine was dark, full of blackcurrant aromas. In the mouth it was round and rich with toasty vanilla flavours. In short it had that essential quality which is rare in a red wine: drinkability. It's a big red wine but you can drink it on its own as though it were a white or rosé. Just about everyone loved it, and we couldn't get enough of the stuff. Literally… Production is low and erratic. Wine would be promised and then not available. We could never guarantee having it in stock which was infuriating for us and customers alike. However, we've stuck with it. Every time we got some it flew out.
We have now got another batch available. It will not last long. I'm told that there is stock now and we'll be able to keep the wine on our list, but I wouldn't necessarily count on it!Domaine des Abournières, Syrah €8.00. Maximum order: 12 bottles.

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