A French Wine Expert's Favorite $15 Côtes du Rhône
Olivier Magny is the eyebrow-raising owner of Paris's Ô Chateau Wine Bar and School. Here, seven of his favorite bottles.
2012 Alain Jaume & Fils Domaine Grand Veneur Réserve Grand Veneur Côtes du Rhône Rouge ($15)
"This is an honest, straightforward Côtes du Rhône that really delivers for under $20. A great weekday wine."
2012 Domaine de la Louvetrie Amphibolite Nature Muscadet ($17)
"Jo Landron's wines are completely undervalued, plus the guy has a really awesome mustache."
2012 Les Vins de Vienne Collines Rhodaniennes Viognier ($21)
"It's great when you see French people doing un-French things like working together. Here, three top Rhône winemakers—Yves Cuilleron, François Villard and Pierre Gaillard—formed a little co-op. If you can't afford wines bearing one of their own names, these are cheaper and don't compromise on quality at all."
2012 Domaine Zind-Humbrecht Pinot Blanc ($23)
"Really, any wine from Zind-Humbrecht is fantastic. My tasting at the domaine was one of the most impressive I've ever done. I must have tasted 30 wines, and they were all incredible. It was like an enchantment."
2012 François Chidaine Clos du Breuil Montlouis Sec ($28)
"It's very easy to make flabby Chenin Blanc, but Chidaine does an amazing job of retaining the variety's elegance."
2012 M. Chapoutier Domaine de Bila-Haut Occultum Lapidem Côtes du Roussilon Villages ($30)
"Chapoutier's Hermitages are among the very best wines on the planet, but they're not cheap. This Roussillon red is a relative bargain. It's beautifully made: a yummy, rich, sensual southern-French wine."
2010 Domaine Léon Barral Faugères ($32)
"People ask which wine you'd take to a desert island, and this would be the one for me. It's unique—so expressive, with such finesse and freshness."