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New Rhone Arrivals
Chateuneuf, Conrdrieu,
Crozes Cotes-du-Rhone, Tavel & More

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$26.99 BTL./$323.88 CASE

One of the first wine estates outside the city of Orange in the far northern sector of Chateauneuf-du-Pape, Domaine de Ferrand's Philippe Bravay exudes serenity and humbleness with his grandiose Rhone wines. Primarily, he is a Chateauneuf specialist (see below), but his Cotes-du-Rhone is a crucial value and Chateauneuf in all but name with the vineyards butting right up to the border.|| Ninety percent Grenache (planted in the late 1930s), 5% Syrah, 2% Cinsault, 2% Mourvèdre, 1% blend of Grenache Blanc of Clairette Blanche, this full-flavored, meaty, complex Cotes-du-Rhone is as traditional as they come. Old school scents of black plum, black licorice, smoke, sanguine, iron, rosemary and peppery notes follow into a full texture that envelops the palate. Strapping and full of unbridled energy are imprinted, all culminating in an impressive finish with further spice, pepper and Rhone soul. A glorious Cotes-du-Rhone indeed. Drink through 2031+ with lamb or a thick pork chop slathered in olive oil and Provençal herbs.

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$26.99 BTL./$323.88 CASE

We are fortunate to even receive any of this small Chateauneuf legend's white Cotes-du-Rhone because a mere 100-125 cases are ever produced. Laurent Charvin's expertise with red wines is on full display with his handsome whites.

Bourboulenc, Roussanne, Clairette and a drop of Grenache Blanc made without the use of oak or malolactic fermentation, this 13% alcohol white Rhone provides immense pleasure. Expansive aromas of acacia, white peach, almost a good-n-plenty candy scent with undertones of jasmine, freesia and lime. In the mouth ample depth and fullness commence then it turns on the jets with brisk, tangy citrus and mineral on the long finish. I actually prefer to decant this white as it really unfurls with aeration. Drink with cod, minestrone, dishes formed around pesto, fried fish or chicken. As evidenced by Michael uncorking a bottle of 2013 last year, this wine will age so you can enjoy it early or later. Only 36 bottles available.

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$29.99 BTL./$359.88 CASE

Over time as Francois Villard has expanded his Domaine, it was a natural fit to purchase land in Crozes-Hermitage. For years this underexposed and underrated appellation had few producers bottling their own wines, many sold to the co-op. As folks retired, land in previously unexplored terroirs like these vineyards emerged in the northern portion of the appellation.

The entry cuvee chez Villard, this classic Northern Rhone Syrah has some surprising heft and palate coverage given the tenderness of the vintage. Broad red and black cherry, subtle smoke and camphor, lilac and ground black pepper. Lots of stuffing and lots of movement with good energy and an assertive, long finish. This is an excellent wine that can easily be uncorked and enjoyed over the next 7-8 years, especially with coq au vin, grilled pork tenderloin with some African spices, beef tenderloin with bacon or soft-ripened cheeses.

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$54.99 BTL./$329.94 - SIX PACK

The very limited, top Crozes-Hermitage at Domaine Villard, Les Malfondieres is from 45+ year-old vines in the Crozes village of Mercurol and is not produced in every vintage, only the finest…and 2016 is a hell of a great vintage!

At almost age eight, this Crozes-Heritage is starting to drink splendidly. Seamless growing conditions and a drawn-out harvest provided rich wines with impeccable balance and approachability. Here this Syrah runs the range of black fruits, sneaky graham and black olive, touches of smoked meat, pastille, coriander and stony vivacity. Stretches out across the palate, the fine acids allow for the depth and old vine qualities to provide intellect and character. Lots of length with touches of mint and chocolate joining the party. Very complex indeed, no problem to age for another 7-8 years. Enjoy with braised lamb shanks, leg of lamb or slow-cooked beef stew, especially jacked with mushrooms.

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$19.99 BTL./$239.88 CASE

Tavel is not red, white or Rose - Tavel is Tavel! Limestone soils drive these wines and while they have big color and body, they always maintain energetic presence and an underbelly of illuminating briskness. Florian Andre of Chateau Manissy is one of the region’s superb producers and when he approached the religious order who owned this property, the monks were impressed with his philosophy and after years of turning down other offers, invited Florian to do the wines.

The wines of Tavel are not sit on the porch and 'watch life stroll by' wines; they are very food-friendly and serious. Friendly and lovely in the initial year, they are often even better in the second and third year after vintage date. The 2023 Tavel Cuvee des Lys reveals raging red berry, wind-swept herbs, mandarin and floral aromas shouting for you to take a big swig. Completely dry, generous and mouth filling, but so invigorating. Brilliant ripeness, but brilliantly balanced, this full Rose winner will stand up to grilled white meats, denser fish, tomato-based pasta dishes as well as spicy Asian cuisine.

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$59.99 BTL./$719.88 CASE

The current vintage of this famed, fab Chateauneuf is 2021, but I leaped at the chance to score a little bit of 2019 that we missed a couple years back.

90% Grenache with the remaining 10% comprised of Syrah, Mourvedre and Cinsault, the 2019 reveals sultry, very upscale aromas that persist and soar from the glass. The northern-Châteauneuf perfume is present, but the old vines penetrate with violet, blackberry, tealeaf and smoked meat. In my notebook, I wrote that this wine reminded me of a psychopathic Beaucastel. Gradually, more white pepper and cumin scents arrive as it sits in the glass. At age five, this wine is a debonair killer in the mouth; extremely vinous (100-year-old vines) with wild rhubarb, turned earth and black olive/pepper coming through. The finish is densely packed with substance and spice and is a wow wine that should be drunk through 2035.

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$13.99 BTL./$167.88 CASE

Domaine Des Gravennes, located in Suze-la-Rousse, one the northernmost villages of the Southern Rhone Valley is a family operation run by brothers, Luc and Remi Bayon de Noyer who produce the wine utilizing organic techniques.

80% Grenache, 15% Syrah, 5% Mourvedre and the wine is a delectable, over-delivering number. Mouth-filling flavors of pure wild berry, black plum and warm peppery spice. The open knit, round and easy structure allows this every day drinker red to pair well with gumbo, sharp cheese, pizza and lamb in any preparation.

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The most famous of appellation for the Viognier grape, one must recognize that while Condrieu is Viogner, Viognier is NOT Condrieu. This wine is unlike any Viognier you may have experienced and Francois Villard is one of the apex producers of this small, rare appellation.

Striking nose of white flowers, fresh apricot, peach, and a touch of honey. In the mouth, it is an elegant, fruit filled wine, with excellent balance and a long intense finish. Many times Viognier can get overtly rich and gooey, and this wine completely avoids this. Prototype Condrieu and highly recommended. Lots of potential and very food friendly, have this with white meat like pork tenderloin in a compote sauce, roasted chicken in a mushroom sauce or a heartier seafood preparation.

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$279.99 - MAGNUM

5 Magnums Available...A rare library release in a large format bottle from an epic Chateauneuf producer. 2010 is one of the greatest Chateauneuf vintages of all time. Think 1990, 1978. In fact, Rhone expert and Master of Wine, John Livingstone-Learmonth in his ''Drink Rhone' publication gives this 6-stars on his usual 5-star scale!

I recently drank a bottle of this wine and it is stupendous. I have not smelled Chateauneuf aromatics like this in years. Old vine magic, sculpted, stacked and tinges of secondary aromas coming through at age 14. A beautiful combination of grenadine, blackberry, rosemary, lavender and peppercorn builds from the glass. Penetrates very deeply and offers up its intense core and personality. Fabulously textured with ample backbone that's enhanced even more with aspects of ardent strawberry, hot-rock and smoky-spicy qualities. Natural freshness and packed with licorice and red tones on the long, luxurious finish that slowly builds. This really comes on as it unfolds in the glass. If you want to drink now, do decant as it does throw sediment. No problem to age on through to its 30th birthday as is typical for Charvin in a big bottle, but damn this is delicious now! Enjoy with classic old Chateauneuf pairings like slow roasted leg of lamb, daube de provence, roasted duck or a pan seared ribeye steak.