Grapelive: Wine of the Day April 4, 2018

2015 Yves Cheron, Gigondas “Grand Montmirail” Vieilles Vignes, Rhone Red, France.
Grown on the decomposed limestone of the hillsides of the Dentelles de Montmirail which reach a height of 2,600 feet, the Yves Cheron old vine Gigondas 2015 is a blockbuster Rhone red with amazing depth and concentration, but also a very hedonistic wine that can be drunk now with great pleasure and stylistic charm. Gigondas has been a highly regarded wine region since at least Roman times, but because of the prestige of and grandeur of Chateauneuf du Pape it was held back and lumped into the greater Cotes du Rhone Villages until 1971 when it became it’s own recognized AOC, and it’s higher elevation gives the wines their own soul, they usually shows more vibrancy and intensity of form when done well, they must be between 50% to 100% Grenache with the allowed remainder being Syrah and Mourvedre mostly. Cheron’s Gigondas is a blend of about 60% Grenache, 30% Syrah and 10% Mourvèdre, all destemmed and fermented in temp-controlled stainless steel vats before being raised mainly in cement tank, with some Syrah lots seeing a bit of oak, including some new barriques, making for a big and explosively bold wine that shows a vibrant purity and rich detail. The palate is full and lavish with an array of black raspberry, cassis, plum and dark cherry fruit layers along with juniper berry, peppercorns, new leather, chalk dust and dried violets, and while super ultra dense and full bodied the heft is well controlled with an inner brightness, refined tannins and it’s sweet fruit balanced by savory elements all of which flows seamlessly and with a beautiful textural flair, especially impressive in it’s youth. This wine has so much bang for the buck, it’s impossible not to be seduced by it’s impressive character, it’s deep purple/garnet hue in the glass and the way it lingers on the finish, it also plays well with a range of cuisines, in particular grilled meats, wild mushroom dishes and even burgers. Maybe not as top notch as Chateau de Saint Cosme or Domaine d’Ourea, but pretty close and at the price is a great value, drink over the next few years.
($25 Est.) 93 Points, grapelive