Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Domaine Tourade Cotes du Rhone, 2007

Just as the Delas Saint Esprit Cotes du Rhone is a Syrah-dominated cuvee (80% Syrah/20% Grenache), this Domaine Tourade offering is Grenache-dominated (80% Grenache/20% Syrah). And there is a big difference.

The color is an intense, deep crimson typical of Grenache, and the aromas are also very Grenache--strawberries, red raspberries, garrigue, and peppercorn. Very flamboyant. I find a slight but distinct difference between Syrah and Grenache peppercorn, the former being more like freshly ground black pepper and the latter more like a whole green peppercorn from the bottle. The wine is very powerful and complex, like a Gigondas. There are even some Gigondas-like purple flowers in the mix. Power and beauty. The wine is smooth on the palate, but there is a tad too much alcohol (14.5% vs 13.5% for the Delas) for my taste. The bite is menthol rather than red pepper, and it will probably fade with mid-term aging. But, even though I usually go for Grenache-based wines, I still prefer the Delas Saint Esprit.

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