2018 Chateau de Saint Cosme, Cotes du Rhone “Les Deux Albion” Rhone Red, France.
The incredible and ultra affordable Chateau grown bottling of Cotes du Rhone, Les Deux Albion, is a classic full bodied and meaty Grenache, Syrah and Mourvedre blend from Louis Barroul at the famous Chteau de Saint Cosme, this 2018 is a vintage with impressive wow factor, coming at a Chateauneuf like 15% natural alcohol and with wonderful fruit density this GSM will confidently drink with wines three to five times the price! This 2018 starts with a heady peony and violet perfume along with some Syrah and Mourvedre earthy/leathery notes as well as thick black and red berries before opening up to a opulent mouth filling palate of boysenberry, pomegranate, damson plum and kirsch as well as tar, licorice, sticky lavender, sandalwood and peppery spices. The weight is well concealed within the graceful texture and inner vibrance of this delicious Cotes du Rhone. This wine really compares well with the estate’s Gigondas, a legendary wine, especially in this vintage, making it an exceptional value, I’m glad I bought myself a few bottles of this gorgeous and complex Les Deux Albion, it should drink nicely for a decade or more!

The 2018 Chateau de Saint Cosme Cotes du Rhone Rouge Les Deux Albion was crafted using 100% whole cluster and native yeast in its fermentation with the Grenache, Syrah and Mourvedre being all co-fermented together in a combination of cement and wood vats with a lengthy maceration. The wine was aged in the same combination of vessels, both well used and imparting minimal influence on the wine’s personality with the terroir being the main factor in the Les Deux Albion’s flavor profile and that is from the vines which are set in the classic hardened clay hillside soils including their ancient alluvium, limestone marl and pebbles. Saint Cosme has been a notable wine producing site since Roman times at set on the original Gallo-Roman villa that still has ancient vats cut into the limestone and the Barroul family has owned it since 1490. The estate still is over looked by its Chapel of Saint Cosme, where it got its current name, and is in the shadow of the Dentelles near Gigondas and Vinsobres. This higher elevation zone has a higher percentage of Syrah and it thrives in the cooler parts of Gigondas and especially well in Vinsobres, which recently gained a full AOC, and where Saint Cosme has their Chateau de Rouanne, a property that is making waves in the region. While the 2016 and 2017 vintages were awesome, this 2018 might be even better for the Les Deux Albion Rouge, don’t miss this great stuff!
($25 Est.) 94 Points, grapelive

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