Snooty Free Affordable French Wine

When it comes to wine, my Husband and I have a theory, no a rule, in a wine stores. If you want a good but inexpensive bottle, skip the French section. Maybe it’s his days spent growing up in the Piemonte region that prompts a little good natured French vs Italian rivalry, but for the most part, since I’ve been his drinking companion, the wines haven’t proven him wrong.

Bottle Shock Movie Poster
Bottle Shock Movie Poster

The French are simply put, snobby about their wines. If you’ve seen the movie Bottle Shock this will come as no surprise to you either.

There are certain varietals and regions like Malbec’s from Argentina or Carmenère from Chile where it’s a bit easier, less frustrating and much more enjoyable to sample your way to a reasonable bargain, that’s reasonably enjoyable.

However, in the last week, twice our assumptions about drinkable, affordable French wines have been proven false by a bottle of Duc de Rochebois Bordeaux 2012, retailing for $11.99. Add to that a “mixed case” discount from our local Whole Foods Wine department and this surprising bottle just hit our regular rotation of reliable, affordable, everyday reds.

2012 Duc De Rochebois Bordeaux
2012 Duc De Rochebois Bordeaux

Bello gave it the rather colorful description of a “fast talker with a genuine handshake.” It’s honest, direct and reliable with a quick introduction of “Hi I’m a good red, nice to meet you.”

More drinkable than complex, yet surprisingly interesting. Strong tannins grip you right away making you forget the sale price. Medium bodied, dry yet with a nice balance of black cherry to graphite, raspberry to tobacco.

If you’re in the market for an affordable French wine, you might want to see how you get along with this Bordeaux, Cheers.


  1. I’m all about Malbecs too–great wine. But about French wines, I’ll say this: we are temporarily living in Europe and a few dollars can get you a great table wine here. We’ll miss that when we move back home.


    1. We live in Germany, so the Rieslings here are great. However, I’m less of a white wine or sweet wine fan, so the French wine (we’re right on the border) calls my name more often. We’re also fairly close to Reims and Champagne country–a trip we need to make in the next few months. I’m far from well schooled in wine, though–I just know what I like.


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