Now on its 80th year, Mouton Cadet is a venerable budget label from the venerable Baron Philippe de Rothschild. (If your supermarket carries any French wine, it’s probably this.)
The brand is now extending the line but instead of blending a selection of grapes, traditional with all Bordeaux wines, the new Cadet d’Oc wines (pictured) are 100% varietal wines sourced not from Bordeaux but from the Languedoc region.
All feature rock-bottom pricing: $9.99 a bottle.
2009 Mouton Cadet Blanc White Bordeaux – 65% Sauvignon Blanc, 20% Semillon, and 5% Muscadelle. Lemony, with clear, unripened melon notes. A little fuzzy on the finish, but perfectly palatable and easygoing. B+
2008 Mouton Cadet Rouge Red Bordeaux – 65% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Sauvignon, and 15% Cabernet Franc. Bitter and rough, as difficult as the Mouton Cadet Blanc is simple and easy. Not a winner. D+
2009 Cadet d’Oc Chardonnay – An efficient Chardonnay, lightly oaked and crisp with apple notes. The finish is a bit off but for the price it’s certainly good enough for a weekday dinner. B+
2009 Cadet d’Oc Cabernet Sauvignon – Exactly what you’d expect from a $10 imported Cab, jammy and smoky with wood notes — probably some shortcuts in the aging here. Some fine plum character at its core, but there’s too much greenery and vegetable notes to make it anything more than not unpleasant. C+
each $10 / moutoncadet.com