Who said you can’t teach an old dog new tricks? I guess being French and representing one of the classic regions of the country would make us think less screwcap friendly and more likely to use the cork as closure. Well, think again and check out two producers, both deserving some cheering for putting the consumer in focus; Domaine des Lises and Sainte Cosme in the Rhône Valley.
Maxime Graillot and Thomas Schmittel, the two guys behind Domaine des Lises, puts a screwcap on the 2011 Equinoxe from Crozes-Hermitage and Sainte Cosme uses the closure on their 2011 Cotes-du-Rhône. None of the wines are intended for longer keeping. They will develop for a year or two for sure, but will most probably charm a majority of us in their immediate youth.
While Maxime’s Crozes-Hermitage offers more depth and the typical scents of cured meat, bay leaves, black pepper, darker berries and oozing minerals, Louis Barruol’s Cotes-du-Rhône is all about instant seduction and pure red fruit. Lots of humus feel in the Sainte Cosme also, what strikes me the most with both the 2011’s though are their amazing fruit feel. Pure finesse for entry level wines. Somehow they are cool, strangely restrained and yet straight to the point. Lower acidity and less tannins than normal in the Sainte Cosme though. Naturally the vintage speaks, having in mind 2011 doesn’t possess the same general high quality as 2010. Then again, this is the kind of vintage where the wine producers more obviously shows their skills.
It’s 2013 now and it feels good to start the new year by highlighting two producers from a classic wine country keeping up with reality. I want quality in my everyday wine and screwcap is more likely to deliver that. Bravo guys!
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