If you are a wine lover who fancies earthy, Rhone blends (that would be me!), you may want to read on! I just uncorked a bottle of Kermit Lynch 2011 Cotes du Rhone Cypress Cuvee and am very impressed with what I am sipping for a mere $13. I can’t find the exact blend on the 2011 vintage, but the 2010 was a combination of Syrah, Grenache, and Mourvedre. The wine is unfiltered and definitely packs some bold flavors!
Pouring a dark reddish, purple in the glass, Cypress Cuvee opens with earthy aromas that feature an abundance of ripe, dark fruit. The palate is meaty with flavors of dark berries, black cherries, forest floor, and spice. Full-bodied with structured tannins, this wine will definitely improve with a couple of years!
My Wine Rating – A-
Food Pairing Suggestions – Pair with steaks, lamb or game meats…a great wine for BBQs!
I was cruising through a local wine store last week and picked up a bottle that caught my eye. Domaine de la Janasse “Terre d’Argile” 2010 is a red blend from southern Rhone that has garnered a lot of attention. Full-bodied and bold, it is the antithesis of restrained wines but well-worth uncorking!
Pouring a dark, inky purple in the glass, this Rhone has aromas of dark berries, licorice, and exotic spices. The palate is full-bodied, powerful, and multi-dimensional with tastes of cherries, black raspberries, black currants, earth, spices, and charcoal. I recommend that you let this wine age…it is fresh and has plenty of acidity to give it a long life in the bottle. ($20)
My Wine Rating – B+
Food Pairing Suggestions – Pair with roasted lamb, game meats, or root vegetables.
2011 Andezon Côtes du Rhône is blend of Syrah and Grenache from importer Eric Solomon. I previously enjoyed wines from his portfolio so I was intrigued by this bottle that comes from a sustainably farmed parcel in Côtes du Rhône, France.
Caution….before you get started tasting, this wine needs a little time in the decanter (and it is definitely a food wine…think beef and game meats). Andezon has earthy aromas of dark berries and spice with a bold palate of cherries, blackberries, licorice, and leather. This unfined and unfiltered wine has drying tannins, healthy acidity, and definitely leaves a lasting (good) impression! (B+, $13)
I love that one of my favorite wine shops has a super helpful employee who just recently moved to the US from France. I constantly pick his brain regarding what French wines I should cellar and what wines are great bargains ready to drink now. Recently, he recommended 2007 E. Guigal Côtes du Rhône as being a wine that really offered a lot of quality for the price. The wine, a blend of Syrah, Grenache, and Mourvedre, retails for around $12 and drinks like it cost 2 to 3 times as much.
The nose has rich aromas of blackberries and tobacco. The palate is impressive in its depth and sophistication. Smooth and silky with notes of dark berries, plum, coccoa, and pepper. A really nice wine for the price! Pick up a few bottles and you won’t feel guilty drinking it midweek or serving it to friends on the weekend. Pair with lamb or beef. (B+)