Friendly and open in feel, offering a burst of cherry and kirsch notes backed by red licorice, floral and garrigue hints. The silky, persistent finish has a nice mineral hint too. Grenache and Syrah. Drink now through 2027. 2,700 cases made, 400 cases imported. — JM
Louis Bernard Reviews
The full-bodied 2016 Chateauneuf du Pape Domaine la Crau des Papes is a fine effort from this widely distributed négociant. Garrigue, tea and floral notes accent raspberry and cherry fruit in this silky-textured wine, which remains lively and fresh through the long finish.
Slightly more expensive, the 2016 Vacqueyras Domaine de Montbayon is a blend of Grenache, Syrah, and Mourvèdre that was brought up all in tank. It offers plenty of earthy black and blue fruits, peppery herbs and hints of violets in a full-bodied, impressively concentrated, balanced style. It’s just another outstanding looking barrel sample from this negociant.
Year's Best Rhone
Red cherry flavors ring out with bell-tone clarity in this wine, herbal notes edging the ripe, juicy flavors. It feels cool and fresh, with a little vanilla and spice to smooth over the stony flavors beneath the fruit.
This isn’t the biggest or ripest Côtes du Rhône, but it balances hints of greenness with fresh cherry fruit. The floral notes on the nose are attractive, while the wine finishes firm and crisp. Boisset Family Estates. —J.C.
This well known négociant has turned in a sold effort. The nose is slightly herbal, but with attractive black-pepper shadings, while the fruit flavors favor dark skinned plum. Drink this medium-bodied, supple wine over the next few years. —J.C.
Lightly nutty, with a toasted almond note followed by yellow apple and shortbread flavors. A dried pineapple hint shows on the finish.