Wine of the week: Chateau Belingard Bergerac Rouge 2016

Chateau Belingard BergeracTotal Wine’s Chateau Belingard Bergerac Rouge, a French red blend, offers value where it’s often difficult to find these days

The Wine Curmudgeon’s luck with private labels form Total Wine, the erstwhile national retailer, has been uneven at best. Too many of them, regardless of where in the world the wine is made, taste like they went through the California Big Wine Processing Machine, which churns out all that “smooooothhhhhhhhh” wine.

Fortunately, the Chateau Belingard Bergerac Rouge 2016 ($11, purchased, 13.5%) is a red wine blend that tastes like the region it comes from – Bergerac in southwest France. Yes, it’s a bit too oaky and fruity, but otherwise it speaks to the region and the grapes in the blend. The latter are mostly merlot, but with about one-quarter cabernet sauvignon and decent dollops of cabernet franc and malbec. This results in noticeable, though not unpleasant tannins, as well as dark red berry fruit and a hint of an earthy finish (thanks to the cabernet franc).

Best yet, the price – given similar wines cost $15 to $18 – adds to the value. This is weeknight pizza wine; chill the bottle to 50 or 55 degrees, pour, drink, and enjoy.

Imported by Saranty Imports

3 thoughts on “Wine of the week: Chateau Belingard Bergerac Rouge 2016

  • By Tony Caffrey - Reply

    At a rough guess, I’d say 80%+ of the imported wine at Total comes from Saranty Imports, a Deutsch affiliate. Deusch are the people who bring you Yellow Tail…..

  • By Mike Dunne - Reply

    Yep, a solid buy in underappreciated Bergerac. I don’t recall that the last vintage I tasted was heavily oaked, but as you suggest winemakers anywhere and everywhere could be buying the latest model of the California Big Wine Processing Machine. Incidentally, when rounding up wines for a column on Bergerac a few years ago I stopped by a local branch of Total Wine. When I couldn’t find any a clerk joined the scouting mission, and we finally found a few bottles, including the Belingard…in the Bordeaux section.

    • By Wine Curmudgeon - Reply

      Both regions are in France, right? Isn’t that close enough?

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