Once upon a blind date, I was told to "go ahead and order the wine" while he stepped outside to take a work call, adding over his shoulder: "No Cabernet though. Too many talons."
I considered getting up and leaving from the kitchen door, but I was already salivating and had (almost) free rein over the wine list.
Scanning the menu, I began to entertain the metaphor that Mr. Malaprop didn't intend to make.
I envisioned each wine as a bird: Some with sweet featherweight feet that would dance frivolously across my tongue, and others with sharp flashing claws that would seize my entire mouth, rendering it apoplectic.
Corbières, a region within France's vast Languedoc-Roussillon AOC which curves along the Mediterranean from Provence to the Pyrenees, falls somewhere between an easy-going, sing-songy chickadee and a heedful, deliberate kingfisher.
What the wine lacks in grip, it makes up for in rusticity and character. The Carignan, Grenache, and Syrah speak of the region's sun-baked, garrigue-covered earth, yet won't let you forget for a sip that it's made from ripe, juicy berries.
Best served at cellar temperature with food--and company--that's a little rough around the edges.