Rhone Valley


Showing 25–33 of 33 results

  • Guillaume Gilles Cornas 2016

    £64.95

    “Inky ruby. Smoke- and spice-accented cherry liqueur, blueberry and violet scents are complicated by hints of olive paste and cured meat. Juicy and focused on the palate, offering intense black and blue fruit, bitter chocolate and licorice flavors and a spicy touch of cracked pepper. The meaty quality comes back on the finish, which shows solid thrust, strong persistence and well-knit tannins. Drinking window: 2024-2032. 92 points”

    Josh Raynolds, Vinous (09/19)

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  • Herve Souhaut La Souteronne 2022

    £29.95

    “All of the wines here are made from biodynamically grown fruit, produced with whole clusters and semi-carbonic maceration, and bottled without fining or filtration. As such, they always display fresh, spicy character and, occasionally, a hint of funkiness that I seldom find intrusive, much less overbearing. Minimal sulfur is used, so cool storage conditions are a must. I also highly recommend buying the wines as soon after release as possible, lest they hang around in less-than-ideal conditions in a warehouse or on a retailer’s shelf. Consider them highly perishable goods.”

    Josh Raynolds, Vinous (04/20)

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  • J.L. Chave Selection Hermitage Blanche 2018

    £49.95

    “By now it’s no secret that Erin Cannon-Chave and Jean-Louis Chave’s semi-négociant operation is producing a range of consistently excellent wines that clearly show the Chave magic at user-friendly prices. While the Hermitage Blanc Blanche will inevitably be compared to the white Hermitage from the J.L. Chave domaine, the wines that intrigue me are that Crozes-Hermitage Blanc and Saint-Joseph Blanc since neither of those appellations are present under the family’s estate label. There may be a domaine Saint-Joseph Blanc, someday, “that’s probably a job that’ll wait for our children to take on,” Chave told me.”

    Josh Raynolds, Vinous (05/20)

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  • J.L. Chave Selection Hermitage Farconnet 2018

    £54.95

    “Rhone wine lovers are well aware by now that these wines, produced by Erin Cannon-Chave and Jean-Louis Chave, deliver excellent value and consistently high quality, which is no surprise given Jean-Louis’s winemaking talents. That said, the Chaves are quick to point out that this isn’t a “Chave Lite” project and the intent isn’t to mimic the work of the family domaine, even if quite a bit of the fruit used here comes from the Chaves’ own vineyards. The wines are widely distributed and, for the most part, quite approachable on release, making them excellent restaurant wine list choices.”

    Josh Raynolds, Vinous (04/20)

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  • Matthieu Barret Cornas Billes Noire 2019

    £89.95

    Review to follow

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  • Moulin de la Gardette Gigondas Tradition 2019

    £34.95

    Review to follow

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  • Moulin de la Gardette Gigondas Ventabren 2019

    £45.49

    Review to follow

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  • Pierre Gonon Saint-Joseph 2018

    £95.00

    “Deep violet. Intensely perfumed, mineral-accented aromas of red and blue fruit preserves, licorice, exotic spices and potpourri, along with an exotic suggestion of incense. Stains the palate with concentrated black raspberry, cassis, bitter cherry and fruitcake flavors that are given spicy lift by a suggestion of white pepper. A violet pastille nuance emerges with aeration and carries through an extremely long, youthfully tannic finish that shows outstanding definition and mineral thrust. Drinking window: 2026-2036. 95 points

    Jean Gonon’s take on the 2018 vintage is that it’s one “where ripeness and freshness converge.” The wines are on the rich side, relatively speaking, “but not as powerful as 2017 nor as elegant as 2016, and definitely not as structured as 2015,” he said. Worldwide attention to this domaine’s outstanding wines has caused availability to dry up and driven prices increasingly higher, but there’s no question that they are solidly placed in the upper tier of quality in the northern Rhône, which makes them look pretty reasonable, price-wise, when compared to plenty of other top performers.”

    Josh Raynolds, Vinous (04/20)

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  • Thomas Farge Saint-Joseph Blanc Grand Angle 2019

    £29.95

    “Headquartered in Saint-Jean de Muzols, this domaine, now run by Guy’s son, Thomas Farge, owns 22 hectares of vineyards spread across the southern portion of Saint-Joseph and down into Cornas and Saint-Péray. The white wines are varying blends of Marsanne and Roussanne, with portions fermented in steam-bent barrels and the rest made in stainless steel. The exception is the Condrieu, which is all barrel fermented and, of course, 100% Viognier. It’s a bit more variable than the other wines in the lineup but reliably excellent. “I’m looking for tension,” explains Farge. “And I love bitterness in the white wines.”

    He says he’s trying to make some natural wines, but he isn’t sure if he’ll do them within the appellation system. Also worth checking out is Farge’s 2019 Vin de France Oxymore collaboration with Stephane Usseglio, in which they blend 65% northern Syrah with 30% Grenache and 5% Counoise from Usseglio’s vineyards. Along with the current releases, I tasted the excellent 2017 Cornas Reynard, which remains much as I observed last time I tasted it, and the 2011 Cornas Harmonie, which appears to be fading a bit and should be consumed over the next few years.

    For the red wines, Farge does a pre-fermentation cold soak, uses a lot of whole clusters and does some extended maceration but with gentle extraction. “I want to have wines that are good to drink on release,” he says. “The goal is to give consumers a good moment.” Farge’s top cuvées are his Cornas Reynard, from 40- to 50-year-old vines, and his Saint-Joseph Passion de Terrasses, from a parcel planted in 1904.”

    Joe Czerwinski, Wine Advocate (01/22)

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