Arthur Sellers Bulletin Archive
2019 was a terrific vintage in the Southern Rhône. It is called the ‘phantom vintage’ because so few wine critics were able to visit and taste them due to the wretched pandemic. However, we have sources on site who confirm the glories of the vintage, particularly the Grenache. Domaine Palon once again has produced first rate wines – Vacqueyras Blanc ‘Blanc du Bary’, Vacqueyras Rouge and Gigondas. All three are terrific.
The Domaine Palon Wines on Offer:
The quantities shown below are what LCBO.com has in stock as I scribble this note. There are a few more cases of the Vacqueyras Rouge that the LCBO has for some reason kept hidden away but will ultimately be posted. For those of you in the Ottawa area, the LCBO’s French Boutique in their 275 Rideau Street store has a good stock of all of these wines.
Please let me know if you would like me to place your orders directly with LCBO.com for you. Just let me know which wines you would like and to which LCBO retail store you would like them delivered.
2019 Vacqueyras ‘Blanc du Bary’ – 13.5% Alc./Vol. LCBO Product No. 112796 $30.30 the bottle
This luscious, refreshing white was crafted from 80% Clairette and 20% Grenache Blanc, both hand-picked from vines averaging more than forty-five years of age. The yield was but 13 hl/ha! It has seen some new oak, but not too much. It is a clear, bright yellow-gold colour with a vibrant nose of grilled almonds, peaches, pears, honeysuckle, vanilla, exotic spices, toast and minerals. It is very smooth and extremely well balanced – lots of fruit offset by a gorgeous acidity. It is fresh, complex and rich with wonderful flavours of peaches and pears. It would be perfect, served at about 8°C, with oysters, other shell fish, fish, goat cheese and rich poultry dishes. This delight is meant to be drunk young but will hold nicely for at least five years. 11 bottles available.
2019 Vacqueyras Rouge – 15.0% Alc./Vol. LCBO Product No. 112788 $30.90 the bottle
This gorgeous, medium-bodied wine is made from 75% Grenache, 16% Mourvèdre and 9% Syrah, hand-picked from vines that average more than forty-five years of age. The Mourvèdre and Syrah were aged in large oak casks for twelve months. It is a deep, pure garnet with complex aromas of plums, prunes, raspberries, black cherries, currants, new leather, Provençal spices with a note of black pepper and cloves. In the mouth it is fresh and lively with surprising complexity and excellent balance. And, oh those delicate, silky Palon tannins. This wine has lots of character, depth and substance and will go beautifully with roasted fowl and charcuterie. This lovely concoction is a real pleasure to drink right now and will continue be so for another eight to ten years. 50 bottles available.
2018 Gigondas Rouge – 15.5% Alc./Vol. LCBO Product No. 112812 $37.35 the bottle
This elegant Gigondas is made from 79% Grenache, 15% Syrah and 6% Mourvèdre hand-picked from seven hectares of vines averaging well over fifty years of age. The Syrah and Mourvèdre were aged for twelve months in new oak casks. It is a pure purple with a lustrous sheen and offers up pronounced aromas of blackberries, black cherry jam, pepper, roasted coffee beans, garrigue, pepper, clove and licorice. It is big and velvety in the mouth with gentle tannins and a long, perfumed finish. Served just below room temperature, this most impressive wine will go perfectly with magrets de canard, wild game, roasts and medium cheeses. I’d decant it for at least an hour before drinking. It will cellar well for ten to fifteen years. 67 bottles available.
2019 La Princesse de Malijay
All of our last shipment of this very popular white has been sold. But, don’t despair. There are more cases on their way from the vineyard and even more on reserve.
It would be most sporting if you would pass this note on to anyone you think might be interested in a couple of very, very good Southern Rhônes.
Many thanks and cheers!
Jim, Hélène and Kate
I contribute regular posts about our experiences in the wild, wacky and wonderful world of wine to a delightful lifestyle blog called Gentleman’s Portion. The latest is titled FAIR DINKUM DISCOVERED DOWN UNDER. Please join me and my fellow contributors, Nigel Napier-Andrews and David Moorcroft as we regale you with a good helping of everything great in life.