Côtes du Rhône “Calades”


New! Winemaker, Damien Vache, really appreciates a lighter bodied style of wine from the Rhône and with the recent hot vintages, this is becoming more and more difficult to achieve. As he replaces old vines that are no longer producing fruit, he is planting more Counoise, Cinsault, and Carignan, grapes that are all naturally lower in alcohol. Now, the challenge is that to be classified as Vacqueyras, the blend must be 90% Grenache, Syrah, Mourvèdre. The “Calades” is classifed as a Côtes du Rhône, although all of the fruit is planted in Vacqueyras. The blend is Cinsault, Counoise, Grenache and it’s made in cement tanks without any sulfur during vinification or aging, only a small amount at bottling.

92 points
"The 2019 Côtes-du-Rhône “les Calades” from winemaker Damien Vache is actually from vines planted entirely the appellation of Vacqueyras, but as it does not contain sufficient percentages of grenache and syrah, it is not entitled to the AOC. Instead, the wine is composed from a cépages of Counoise, Cinsault and Carignan, in an attempt to lower the octane a bit (though it still comes in at 14.3 percent in the drought vintage of 2019). Damien ferments and ages the wine in cement tanks. The 2019 les Calades offers up a lovely bouquet of dark berries, hickory smoke, roasted meats, pepper, dark soil tones and a topnote of garrigue that is very long on lavender. On the palate the wine is deep, full-bodied, focused and complex, with a fine core and soil signature, moderate tannins and a long, well-balanced and very gently warm finish. This is a superb wine and I cannot wait to taste it from a summer that is not torrid, if we ever see one again in the cauldron of global warming. But, this weathers the challenge of 2019 very well indeed. 2022-2040+."
View from the Cellar

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National Portfolio
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