2017 Chateau Valcombe, Rosé “Epicure” Cotes du Ventoux, Rhone Valley, France.
Not far from the famous Mount Ventoux, which is one of the toughest climbs in the Tour de France, it can be seen from across the Rhone’s Luberon standing tall and shimmering white from the chalky soils that make up this regions Marl underpinnings along with hardened clay, sand and ancient river stones this part of the Southern Rhone is mostly known for their Grenache based reds, but one of their secret pleasures is their dry Rosé wines, with Chateau Valcombe being founded and crafted by long-time vigneron in Chateauneuf-du-Pape, Paul Jeune, formerly of Domaine Monpertuis, who has recently retired with new owners Luc and Cendrine Guénard, who worked under him for years now at the helm. They certified to 100% Organic and continue the tradition of making outstanding wines. The Valcombe Rosé is vinified via direct press, whole cluster from a blend of Grenache Noir (60%), Cinsault (20%), Carignan (10%) and a touch of Clairette (10%). Interestingly, the vines for the Rosé are of an average age of 40 years, so there is a ton of soul and character found in this is a completely bone dry Rosé. With a bright and vivid pink/salmon hue in the glass this 2017 Valcombe Rosé is explosive in flavor and fresh deal with a cooly crisp personality showing tangy strawberry, watermelon, earthy sour cherry and vigorous citrus notes along with steely mineral, delicate floral tones and zippy spices. Not easy to find, this Chateau Valcombe Epicure Rosé is an exceptional value and a very pleasing Summer wine, imported by Rosenthal Wine Merchant, it is well worth searching out, by the case, and don’t miss their other Ventoux grown offerings either, especially their reds.
($14 Est.) 92 Points, grapelive

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