Monday, December 4, 2017

Saint Cosme Little James' Basket Press Rouge, (2015)

The name, the cartoon drawings, the style of the label suggests that this is a fun wine. And it is. But I also got serious pleasure from this beautiful expression of Grenache, one of my favorite wine grapes.

The grapes probably come from the Southern Rhone, but the wine can claim only a vin de table designation because of the unusual way it is made. Commonly used for sherry and tawny port, he solera method works very well here for a dry table wine. About 50% of the wine comes from the current vintage (2015) which is added to a barrel containing wine from every vintage since 1999. As w inemaker Louis Barruol points out, "Our solera is getting more and more complexity year after year. When we add the current vintage, the solera gains a new element without changing the style."

The color is much deeper than I expect from even a young Southern Rhone Grenache, but the aromas and flavors are spot on. Rich, ripe mouthfeel with lots of fresh fruit: strawberries, cherries, a touch of cassis. Soft but not simple. Has mature fruitcake qualities lurking underneath that are suggestive of a fine Chateauneuf du Pape or Gigondas. Fermented and aged in vat.

I bought a bottle for $11.99 at D&W in Kalamazoo and will go back for more. It is great with an every day meal, but I would not hesitate to serve it at a special dinner. Serious fun.

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