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2007 Domaine des Escaravailles Les Hautes des Granges Roaix Cotes du Rhone
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- Cellar 4 - 5 years (2013-2014)
- ABV 15%
- Closure: Cork
The Australian wine industry owes much of its present success to Shiraz. DNA sequencing indicates that the variety is a descendant of two little known French grape varieties, Durela and Mondeuse Blanc, grown in the Rhone Valley in France's south east since 500 B.C. The Rhone Valley covers a vast area and it is not really a single region, but rather, two regions seperated by an almost 50 km vinefree stretch. Of its 15 appellations, eight in the north and seven in the south, it is the south which is home to most of the vines, making up the Côtes du Rhône and Côtes du Rhône Villages. This is also where the bulk of the region's enormous production takes place, second only to Bordeaux in France.While Shiraz (Syrah) is synonymous with the Rhone's 'Hermitage' and 'Cote Rotie' wines, today amongst the region's most famous (and expensive) reds, it's far from the only varietal grown. In fact, in the Southern Rhone, Shiraz frequently plays second fiddle to other varieties such as Grenache, Cinsault or Mourvèdre. In all, twenty three varieties are permitted throughout the entire Rhone Appellation (though generally no more than ten are typically used in the red blends). Whilst this causes confusion for the average wine lover, it's actually part of what makes Cotes du Rhone wines so consistently enjoyable and nearly always well-priced, especially those from the south. In the best examples, Shiraz or Grenache becomes the basis of beautifully balanced, exuberant wines, which in certain years could be mistaken for having come from Australia. These characteristics are certainly true of the 2007 vintage in the South, which is considered one of the most remarkable to have hit the market in recent decades. Village after village seems to have managed more consistent and more powerful wines than any vintage in recent memory. It's also a year in which several small producers have risen to the fore, capturing the wine world's attention. Amongst these is a third generation family winery, 'Domaine des Escaravailles' about whom noted American wine writer, Robert Parker, has recently enthused "...Readers should be on the lookout for the wines from this superb estate... Proprietor Gilles Ferran owns some sensational old vines spread among his 160+ acres in the Cotes du Rhone and the Cotes du Rhone-Villages of Rasteau, Cairanne, and Roaix. Yields are low, with most of the vineyards rendering less than 30 hectoliters per hectare. The 2007s are the finest wines yet..."
Cellar 4-5 years (2013-2014)
Alc/Vol:15% Other Reviews...
The 2007 Cotes du Rhone-Villages Roaix Les Hautes Granges (100% Syrah) is aged in 100% small oak casks. Normally, Syrah from the southern Rhone does not fare all that well on its own, but this is an exception to the rule. Sweet aromas of black truffles, camphor, blackberries, and cassis jump from the glass of this inky/purple-colored 2007. The new oak component is largely concealed behind a wealth of fruit and glycerin. This fleshy, rich offering behaves like a Hermitage from the northern Rhone. Drink it over the next 5-7 years.
Robert Parker, The WIne Advocate #181, Feb 2009