I was down to my last bottle of 2000 Domaine Les Aphillanthes, Cuvee du Cros, Cotes du Rhone Villages so when I saw it available on WineBid I grabbed a few bottles. This is a dark, flavorful wine drinking at its peak which means it is very satisfying. I love how Rhone wines can be pleasurable both in youth and maturity!
2000 Domaine Les Aphillanthes, Cuvee du Cros, Cotes du Rhone Villages –
Imported by Weygandt-Metzler. This is 100% Syrah aged in demi-muids. Alcohol 14.7%. This is a generous wine with minerally black and red fruit accented by garrigue. It still has power in reserve at this stage. The fruit is plentiful and deep with the structure only noticeable towards the end. Only bits of dry wood flavor peak through so the wine presents itself as a harmonious mouthful. **** Now – 2019.
Phil has imported the wines of Domaine des Pasquiers for three years now. The trio of 2015 Rhone wines in this post represents the latest offering. 2015 is quite a vintage and all of these wines show significant flavor and stuffing. Of the trio, my favorite is the 2015 Domaine des Pasquiers, Cote du Rhone Villages Plan de Dieu. It is deep, flavorful, and has grip that I like. As with any proper Cotes du Rhone it will drink well over the next several years. The 2015 Domaine des Pasquiers, Cotes du Rhone Villages Sablet is definitely young and in need of age. I could see it outstep the Plan de Dieu once it is mature but for a bit of raisin flavor. Maybe everything will come together in a couple years, in that case this could be a bit of a sleeper. The 2015 Domaine des Pasquiers, Gigondas follows is the house style of modern Gigondas. While I prefer more funk this is certainly impressive with fat notes and a very long aftertaste to boot. These wines are available at MacArthur Beverages.
2015 Domaine des Pasquiers, Cote du Rhone Villages Plan de Dieu – $15
Imported by MacArthur Liquors. Alcohol 14.5%. This is a very dark, grapey red color. The familiar, deep flavor leans more towards red fruit than black and is supported by strong, very fine tannic structure and watering acidity. With air herbs and a bit of inkinesss come out. It is certainly very flavorful with a touch of compelling grip, lots of flavor, and a dense almost chocolate finish. *** Now – 2022.
2015 Domaine des Pasquiers, Cotes du Rhone Villages Sablet – $15
Imported by MacArthur Liquors. Alcohol 14.5%. This wine plays it close with black fruited, powdery ripe flavor. There is extract and just the right amount of acidity. The very fine drying structure and wood notes indicate it needs a year or two for integration. The one distraction are fleeting flavors of raisins. **(*) 2018-2024.
2015 Domaine des Pasquiers, Gigondas – $25
Imported by MacArthur Liquors. Alcohol 14.5%. This blue fruited wine is strong in flavor and strong in structure. It is a dense, sexy with a modern personality of fat, minerals, and structure. The aftertaste is persistent. *** Now – 2027.
The 2015 Pierre Le Grand, Crozes-Hermitage must set a benchmark for dense flavor and strength when it comes to Crozes-Hermitage. Perhaps it is atypical for the region but the wine is attractively savory, textured, and lively from acidity. This is a lot to receive from a $20 Northern Rhone Syrah. Give it a try! This wine is available at MacArthur Beverages.
2015 Pierre Le Grand, Crozes-Hermitage – $20
Imported by Misa Imports. This wine is 100% Syrah sources from 40 year old vines. Alcohol 13%. This is a dense, savory wine coupled with smooth edges. There is ripe texture made more engaging by the lively acidity. Though this wine has power it is still evocative of the Northern Rhone with its floral notes. *** Now – 2023.
The 2014 J.L. Chave, Offerus, Saint-Joseph is a fine example from the Northern Rhone. It is pure in feeling and combines meat and fruit with floral and stone notes. It is already quite expressive yet has the personality to develop over the next several years. I recommend you grab a few to drink both now and later. This wine is available at MacArthur Beverages.
2014 J.L. Chave, Offerus, Saint-Joseph – $30
Imported by Erin Cannon Imports. Alcohol 13.5%. The nose reveals aromas of meat coated with brighter red fruit. This is a forward wine in the mouth with blue and black fruit mixed with floral hints. It starts off with an open feeling partially due to minimal tannic structure and a hint of fat in the aftertaste. With air this mineral infused wine is almost lip-smacking in flavor and reveals some tightness suggesting further development will take place. ***(*) Now – 2025.
With spring break winding down it is time to start posting again. Of good value and ripe for drinking is the 2015 Chateau Juvenal, Jolie, Cotes du Ventoux. This is a deep, black fruited wine with a mineral middle which keeps things in perspective. At $15 per bottle, this joint effort between Philippe Cambie and Chateau Juvenal, will please many people. We have already pulled the corks on two bottles! This wine is available at MacArthur Beverages.
2015 Chateau Juvenal, Jolie, Cotes du Ventoux – $15
Misa Imports. This wine is a blend of 70% Grenache and 30% Syrah sourced from 50+ year old vines. Alcohol 15%. This is a youthful wine with deep fruitiness that conveys richness from red then powdery black fruit. Though rich with a smooth start, the wine becomes more focused with a mineral middle and dry finish. *** Now – 2019.
The half-bottle format of 2011 Domaine Tempier, Bandol has entered a great drinking period which should continue for some time. The deep flavors are attractively ripe and a few years of bottle age mix nicely with leather and meat. If you are looking for a wine to buy this weekend then grab a few halves and pop one open as soon as you get home. Also for current drinking, albeit at the budget end of things, the 2014 Clos La Coutale, Cahors is a wine to drink mid-week. It is a lithe wine, think black tea and herbs, delivered in a fresh manner. Whereas the Tempier will drink well for years to come the Coutale should be consumed over a year or so. These wines are available at MacArthur Beverages.
2011 Domaine Tempier, Bandol – $22 (375mL)
Imported by Kermit Lynch. This wine is a blend of 75% Mourvedre, 14% Grenache, 9% Cinsault, and 2% Carignan sourced from 40+ year old vines, fermented in stainless steel then aged 18-20 months in oak foudres. Alcohol 11%-14%. There is a fine, engaging nose with hints of ripeness. In the mouth is a lively start which soon builds depth, minerals, and grip before coating the gums with a lovely aftertaste. The ripeness of the start dissipates in the middle only to return in the aftertaste. It has already developed meat and leather flavors but the structure and acidity will see development for a few more years. ***(*) Now – 2023.
2014 Clos La Coutale, Cahors – $14
Imported by Kermit Lynch. This wine is a blend of 80% Malbec and 20% Merlot sourced from 20+ year old vines fermented in stainless steel then aged in oak foudres and barrels. Alcohol 13.5%. This is an interest wine combining black tea notes with fresh black fruit and acidity. The wine is of lithe profile bringing on drier black fruit, herbs, and a little bit of grip in the finish. There is minimal structure making this a wine for the short-term. ** Now – 2018.
I do not think I have ever tasted a Rhone wine solely from Valreas. The 2015 Domaine du Seminaire, Cote du Rhone Villages Valreas is a new wine in our area so of course I grabbed a bottle. This is a traditionally made wine, fermented in concrete with no use of oak. It is strong and forward with a grapey, floral personality. The liveliness is attractive, causing you to return for another taste. I imagine it might open up over the next year but it is a fun drink right now. Go get some! This wine is available at MacArthur Beverages.
2015 Domaine du Seminaire, Cote du Rhone Villages Valreas – $18
Imported by Martine’s wines. This wine is a blend of mostly Grenache with Syrah that was fermented concrete. Alcohol 14%. The higher-toned grapey, floral nose makes way to similarly grapey, black fruit in the mouth. The wine has quite the strength, building intensity through the middle. This is balanced by almost lively acidity and fine texture. Flavors of baking spices and a tangy finish add to the complexity. This is an impressive, grapey wine. *** Now – 2022.