Barton & Guestier Cotes du Rhone 1998

Rhone Red Blends from Cotes du Rhone, Rhone, France

Item No. 38319
  • red wine
Ratings Pedigree:

Winemaker's Notes

The Rhône Valley vineyards are spread over 190,250 acres, making it the second largest appellation in France after Bordeaux. The B&G Côtes du Rhône comes from the southern part of the appellation (between Montélimar and Avignon). The climate is a Mediterranean one, particularly subject to the Mistral (a strong north wind which blows down the Rhône Valley towards the Mediterranen Sea). There is a variety of soil types, from cobblestones to clay, sand and limestone. These soils are well suited not only to providing the vine with sufficient water, but also to releasing day time heat stored in the rocks and soil during the night. It is ideal terroir for producing rich and powerful wines. VINTAGE After the frost of April 14th, heat, generous sunshine and a dry period dominated the weather during the growing cycle of the vines. The Grenache was unusually high-yielding this year, which created a blending challenge. A significant amount of Carignan and Syrah were used to balance the Grenache and add structure and depth to the Grenache's fruity, forward flavors. WINEMAKING In making this wine, the goal is to extract good fruit aromas without excessive tannin. After the grapes were destemmed, the alcoholic fermentation was carried out at a high temperature (86-95°F) with daily délestage (a new method of pumping also known as "rack and return", over whereby the tank is emptied of its fermenting juice, which is then pumped back over the skins: this method makes for better and more even extraction). The number of pumpovers is determined by regular tasting during fermentation. The length of the maceration depends on the grape variety (four days for Grenache and more than 15 days for Syrah and Carignan). In the final blend, Syrah gives the wine structure, color and floral aromas, Grenache gives richness and toasted aromas, and Carignan gives tannic structure and body. WINEMAKER NOTES Beautiful purple color with violet highlights. Aromatic and intense, recalling ripe cherry fruit, tobacco and spices. Both full bodied and well structured with silky tannins and a long spicy finish. A fine example of the vintage.

Learn About Barton & Guestier

The company's founder, Thomas Barton, left his native Ireland and emigrated to Bordeaux when he was just 30 years old. He was a true adventurer, looking to make his fortune, and founded a shipping company in 1725. The first barrels of wine were naturally exported to Ireland, which, along with Holland, was the biggest market for Bordeaux in the early 18th century. Very quickly, his...

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Learn About Cotes du Rhone

A Cote of Many Grapes The appellation of Cotes du Rhone encompasses much of the land of the area, not to mention much of the wine - over two-thirds of the wine produced here is of the Cotes-du-Rhone appellation. Wines here need only be from the Cotes de Rhone geographic area (which is fairly large) and consist of one or more of the 22 varieties permitted. Being such a wide...

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Learn About Rhone Red Blends

The Rhone region of France has a delightful selection of red varieties. There are 22 grapes allowed in the Rhone AOC, about half of them red. Most of these varieties are used as secondary blending partners, often comprising less than 10% of the blend. The primary red players of Rhone blends are Syrah, Grenache and Mourvedre. Most wines from the Southern Rhone use Grenache as their...

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Winemaker's Notes Deep cherry red colour. Intense nose with strong spicy and fruity aromas (black pepper, cherry jam and liquorice). ...
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