Archive for the ‘Cinsault’ category

Domaine du Gros’Nore Bandol 2004

February 14, 2008

img_4160.jpgBandol is a unique appellation in the Provence. It is in this relatively small area where the sundrenched and protective south-facing restanques offer the right conditions for Mourvèdre to fully ripen. That’s the reason why this terroir is mostly dedicated to this surly variety, more strongly still, for a long time Bandol was its last stronghold while in other Provençal areas earlier ripening and higher yielding varieties were planted. The hot conditions combined with a long growing season inevitable lead to sturdy wines with a lot of alcohol and tannins, the main reason why in many winegrowing regions Mourvèdre is mostly used as a blending partner that adds a sturdy backbone. However, in Bandol it plays the starring role with a statutory minimum of 50% in any blend with the other permitted varieties Grenache and Cinsault. That most growers in Bandol go well beyond this limit gives an indication of its virtuosity.

Domaine du Gros’Noré is one of those excellent producers that embodies Bandol’s soul with self imposed low yields, manual viticulture and modern winemaking as the main ingredients for this intriguing wine. The domaine’s commitment to authenticity is further shown in the blend that consists of 80% Mourvèdre, 15% Grenache and 5% Cinsault, resulting in a wine that looks deep, inky purple in the glass. Maturation in big foudres allows the fruit to express itself through an array of aromas reminiscent of cassis, prunes, cherries, liquorice, leather and undergrowth. The rich, thick, voluptuous palate is loaded with flavour and tannins remarkably balanced by superb acids that add subtility and class. The generosity of this hedonistic wine could be enjoyed straight away although it will evolve into something really special when cellared with patience. 92+ points

Source: Vintage & Vine/Liquid Library  Price: $70  Drink: Now-2018



Domaine de Rimauresq Rose 2006

February 13, 2008

Rosé represents around 80% of the total production of the Côtes de Provence and regarding the colourful palette of  varieties and terroir I’ve decided to focus on another example of the modern and dry style. The identity of the Domaine de Rimauresq rosé is based on an exotic mix of Cinsault, Tibouren, Mourvèdre and Grenache, all cornerstones of the more traditional blends. Add the complex and unusual terroir, a composition of granite, rocks, quartz and schist and you get a different wine with mineral purity like this. Pale salmon with an onion skin hue, the nose shows aromas of small red berries, peach, flowers and a hint of spice. The harmonious palate opens with a soft and smooth texture that slowly gives way to rather austere mineral acidity on a bone-dry finish. This is another cracking new-wave rosé that shows why the Provence is the uncontested leader of this style. 88 points

Source: Fonty’s Pool  Price: $25  Drink: Now


Domaine de Saint Andrieu Rose 2006

February 11, 2008

img_4158.jpgRosé is one of those styles that’s not really taken seriously by many winemakers, connaisseurs and writers alike. It is often dismissed as indefinable, too light to be a red or too pink to be a pristine white, or simply labelled as bland, dull and even void. But when it’s properly made in a dry, characterful, modern style, rosé can be charmingly delicate. As with most innovative, exciting and foremost ambitious winemaking France is the home of this modern style, especially the Northern Rhône and the Provence. Only considering the multitude of terroirs and grape varieties in the latter, combined with the oenological options, it is not hard to see the sheer diversity of rosé. The in 1999 founded Centre de Recherche et d’Expérimentation sur le Vin Rosé in Vidauban ultimately shows that the potential of this region’s main style is finally recognised by further exploring these themes.

The 2006 Rosé from Domaine de Saint Andrieu is a typical example of a Provençal blend from Grenache, Syrah and Cinsault. Pale salmon in colour this wine is scented with red berries, white flowers and subtle spice. The round, softly textured palate shows an impeccable balance between delicate fruit, tangy acid and savoury spiciness towards a dry and fresh finish. A lovely, seductive and in every sense complete wine. 89 points

Source: Ce Soir Wine Importers  Price: $22  Drink: Now