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Two Exciting French Wines


I occasionally come across wines that are so deeply satisfying and affordably priced that I can hardly contain myself.  This happened twice this so month so I decided to write about them before I managed to catch up with all of my other tasting notes.  I picked up the Santa Duc from the MacArthurs’ dump bin a week or so ago.  I expected a decent drink as it is a good wine from a good vintage.  I did not expect the perfect expression of a Cotes du Rhone beginning to develop complexity.  We both really enjoyed it.  Pleased that it was so tasty but remiss that there was probably no more I emailed Phil.  He quickly responded that it was a closeout and they would be receiving almost 200 cases shortly.  This is a stunning buy and one of the best bottles under $10 that I have drunk in a long time.  Buy it by the case, I know I will.

Yves Gras, Image from Dme Santa Duc

The Chateau Pesquie at two and a half times the price is also a lovely wine from a remarkable producer in Ventoux.  It is similar to the Santa Duc in that it is very satisfying right now but will develop for years to come.  These are lovely wines to drink at home or for a restaurant wanting to surprise customers.

The Santa Duc is imported by Robert Kacher Selections and will be available for $9 at MacArthurs.  The Chateau Pesquie is imported by Eric Solomon/European Cellars and was recently available at MacArthurs for $24.

2006 Santa Duc, Les Vieilles Vignes, Cotes du Rhone
This is a blend of 60% Grenache, 20% Syrah, 10 % Mourvedre, and the remaining  10% Cinsault, Cournoise, and Carignan.  The Grenache is sourced from 50-year-old vines.  The wine is aged in vat.  This bottle drank well over two nights.  There were flavors of riper red fruit, Kirsch, and brambly black fruit.  This ripe, mouthfilling wine has stone notes before it turns bluer with black licorice, delivered in a dusty manner before the ripe, textured tannins appear in the finish.  This will be a lovely drink for years to come. *** Now-2017.

2007 Chateau Pesquie, Quintessence, Ventoux
This is a blend of 80% Syrah and 20% Grenache sourced from old vines, the Grenache vines being over 50 years old.  The wine is aged for 12 months in 60% used and 40% new oak barrels.  The nose is light with gritty fruit.  This savory wine is rich with dark flavors, sweet spices, and delicate red flavors that dance on the tongue.  It is full-bodied with some very fine tannins.  The finish is smooth with some vanilla notes and ripe, powdery tannins. ***(*) Now-2020.

  1. November 14, 2011 at 5:15 pm

    Man! You’ve given me a new idea for a DC Wine Buyers Collective deal. I’ll contact Phil about the Santa Duc. Sounds exactly like what the doctor ordered for the upcoming cold weather.

    • November 14, 2011 at 8:15 pm

      Great idea, I am curious to hear what others think about the wine!

  1. November 29, 2012 at 4:20 pm

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