Saturday, March 29, 2008

Camille Cayran La Reserve Cotes du Rhone Village Cairanne, 2004

This wine is produced by Cave de Cairanne, a cooperative of more than 80 winegrowers who pool their expertise and carefully tended produce in one commonly owned winemaking facility. My favorite Cairanne wines come from Domaine l'Oratoire Saint Martin but with their prices escalating to about $20 today, I have turned to Cave de Cairanne as a source and have had no disappointments to this point.

This 2004 is a bright crimson with a gem-like brilliance. It has incredibly fresh fruit scents and flavors--gushing actually with red berries, cherries, lavender and a hint of black pepper. Very ripe and forward. Fruit charm is what this wine is all about. The label says 65 percent Grenache but it smells and tastes like 100 percent. As smooth as silk with no tannins to be found. On the other hand, this wine is not to be taken lightly. There's a depth and seriousness that becomes ever more apparent as the wine warms and on the second night.

About 80 percent of this wine is given a traditional vinification but 20 percent is produced through carbonic maceration to preserve the fresh fruit flavors. It's the best of both worlds, and I love it. Cairanne wines rank high in my estimation, and Cave de Cairanne is a good source. I paid about $12.99 at Village Corner in Ann Arbor.

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