Southern Rhône Cru 91 Points

August 06, 2021 3 min read

"This property, owned by the Roux family and with holdings in several different appellations, has been on a serious roll over recent vintages." — Joel Czerwinski, Wine Advocate

 

The Rhône Valley is full of incredible wines across all price ranges. In the northern Rhône, where the Syrah grape is dominant, you find the Hermitage and Cote Rotie appellations. Wines from these regions are some of the most sought after wines in all of France and command top prices.

In the southern Rhône, you can find real bargains! In this region, Grenache is planted the most; this varietal loves the warm climate and thrives in gnarly old bush vines. The top appellation here is Chateauneuf-du-Pape, but the real value here is in Gigondas, Vacqueyras and especially the Côtes du Rhône.

 

 

Today's wine is imported from Domaine Notre Dame des Pallières. Claude Roux runs his family estate with the help of his two children, Isabelle and Julien, who are slowly taking over the day to day operations. Notre Dame des Pallières is a family estate that dates back to the 10th century. The estate's name comes from a fountain on the property that was said to hold water that people believed protected them from the plagues during the Middle Ages. Notre Dame des Pallières is one of the standard bearers of Gigondas. They own 74 acres in the region and produce incredible values in a variety of price ranges.

The Côtes du Rhône is a sea of vines with approximately 140,000 acres planted. Napa Valley by comparison has just about 45,000 acres planted with grapes. The first level of quality is labeled simply as Côtes du Rhône. The next level up is Côtes du Rhône Villages where wines have to come from specific areas and adhere to stricter guidelines such as producing lower yields. The third is what we are offering today, Côtes du Rhône Villages with the Village name, in this case Rasteau. Rasteau was given approval in 2010 to add its Village to the name of their dry red wines. Rasteau is unique with varied soils that lend a powerful yet elegant style to the wines. Many of the vineyards are also covered in round stones that were carried down the Alps by the Ouvèze River, a tributary of the Rhône, when glaciers melted 18 million years ago. The stones hold the heat from the day and release it at night, helping make the grapes more concentrated.

This is a wine we have purchased since the 2014 vintage; it drinks great out of the bottle or ages nicely for about five years! This has settled down in the bottle and is drinking great right now. This Grenache-dominant red would be great for anything off the grill!

 

Notre Dame des Pallières Côtes du Rhône Rasteau 2018 750mL

91 Points – Wine Advocate

"The 2018 Rasteau les Ribes (search the back label for the "les Ribes" designation), is a full-bodied blend of 70% Grenache, 15% Mourvèdre, 10% Syrah and 5% Cinsault. Loaded with blackberries and blessed with hints of dried spices, it's supple and ripe, almost creamy in texture on the palate, then mixes fresh fruit, garrigue notes and dark chocolate on the lingering finish. This property, owned by the Roux family and with holdings in several different appellations, has been on a serious roll over recent vintages.” - Joel Czerwinski.

 


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