This is old-time Gigondas at its best--not a great wine but a very good one and a joy to drink with Provencal style roast lamb (potatoes, onions, tomatoes, olive oil roasted under the lamb to catch the drippings). It's not a Chateauneuf du Pape, but it may be an even better match for the dish on the table.
The color is dark but getting some brownish tints. The bouquet is powerful and intense; lifted notes of cherry/berry and hints of flowers and Provencal herbs. Thyme--yes! It's in the lamb dish, and it's also in the wine--garrigue galore. Flavors are similarly powerful and complex with lots of old vine Grenache character. Alcohol content is 14.5%, but that's a plus for this wine; it gives it warmth and power without detracting from its herbal subtlty and beauty.
This cuvee of Domaine de la Tourade Gigondas is made using traditional methods--no destemming, aging in large old barrels and no new oak. It's my style of Gigondas, and it's drinking beautifully right now. I like it better than the 1998 Font-Sane Gigondas I had a few weeks ago.