Wine 52 goes to France. (September 2023)
By Master of Wine, Christopher Burr
After an auspicious start with their wine selections from Portugal and Spain, expectations are high for where they might find other goodies.
The Rhone has always been one of the best places in otherwise expensive France to find great value, with lots of interesting wines to match with great regional gastronomy.
There were one white Rhone and two reds. The white called "Glou Glou" was a white Ventoux from the southern Rhone, a blend of Claireitte Blanche, a widely planted grape with good acidity, often used for sparkling wines and previously for vermouth, and here blended with Grenache Blanc a low acid but richer flavoured grape often found in white Chateauneuf du Pape. This was a relatively simple wine, pleasant, but without the character of some white Rhones.
The first red, called Profonde a 2019 typical Cotes du Rhone blend of Syrah and Grenache, has nice wild bramble juicy fruit and is soft and round.
But the second red was much more interesting, as a single village wine from Grignan Les Adhemar, again a 2019 blend of Syrah and Grenache, but with far more intensity and weight and altogether a classier better wine.
Interestingly their region used to be called Coteaux du Tricastin, but a few years ago, the locals felt the reputation of Tricastin was poor, so changed its name! All the better, as the wines, by and large, are very good.
Wine52's magazine is always interesting, and the little bags of snacks disappear quickly. But I am pleased to see the next few boxes are moving on to Italy, and other countries, so maybe they can show us some wines to beat the French?
Updated 15th August 2022