2015 Domaine d’Ouréa, Vacqueyras, Rhone Valley, France.
A blend from “Hautes Garrigues” and “Les Pendants” plots, Adrien Roustan’s beautiful Vacqueyras is a pure terroir wine with amazingly deep character that almost feels more like a Northern Rhone than a Southern Rhone with it’s vitality and freshness. Adrien’s wines are the kind of wines I could drink every day, I love this wine it has ripe fruit, but stylish life with layers of dark fruits, spice and subtle earthiness, it’s complex and intriguing, but with a simple, sensually pleasing unpretentiousness! Domaine d’Ouréa is practicing biodynamic and goes toward natural wines, though the young 29 year old Adrien Roustan studied in Burgundy, and his wines show a grace and elegance that stand out in a region re-finding it’s traditional roots and ancient soul, Roustan is a winemaker (Vigneron) to watch, his winery is on nine hectares of vines in Vacqueyras, but it’s his high-elevation Gigondas plots that were the inspiration for the domaine’s name, Ourea were the children of the Greek goddess Gaia, the Mother Earth. d’Ourea (the Ourea) became the gods of the mountains. The d’urea Vacqueyras is made from 60% Grenache, 30% Syrah, 10% Carignan all organic and native yeast fermented, de-stemmed, in concrete/cement vats, no oak is used here on the reds, with this aged 18 months in the cement. The soils here shine through, with sandstone, yellow clay/marl limestone giving the density and purity of fruit, this Domaine d’Ourea 2015 also showing the vintage’s opulence and rich warm flavors, making this feel more like a full blown Chateauneuf-du-Pape with briar laced olallieberry, damson plum, mure and violette on the lush palate, balanced by a nice cut of acidity and contrasting savory/stony tones with dusty chalk, saline, black licorice/fennel and classic garrigue, that gives a lavender oil sweet/tanginess. The year was showy and it comes through with less bright peppery notes than is normal, but a faint leather and feral earthy elements keeps this beautiful Vacqueyras from being cloying or slutty, this is such a joyous Rhone red, it’s almost without fault and should drink well for years to come, imported by Floraison Selections in California, this and d’Ourea’s Gigondas are wines to look for, these are amazing wines for the money.
($29 Est.) 93+ Points, grapelive

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