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Clos de Trias Ventoux Rouge 2012
A great pairing with red meat with provencal herbs (thyme, rosemary, sage).
On the foothills of white-caped Mt. Ventoux, 350 meters above sea level, Even tends to 25 hectares of old vine Grenache along with a bit of Syrah, Cinsault, and Carignan. The area has a climate of extremes - snowy winters, sunny Provencal summers, and the powerful Mistral wind - which creates wines with tremendous character. The Bakkes farm their vineyards organically, following the biodynamic calendar to enhance the vitality of their ecosystem and express their terroir in full. Grapes are all hand-picked & hand-sorted; Destemming depends on the vintage. In the cellar, Even’s work is light-handed. He uses indigenous yeasts, bare-minimum sulfur, trusts the grapes to adapt to their own ferment temperature, and likes to give them air early on. After 6 harvests offering very different possibilities, it can be said that he uses no recipes. Rather, he attempts to express the grape varieties in each specific vintage.
Stretching across the slopes of the Ventoux mountain in the southeastern region of the Rhône River Valley, Cotes du Ventoux excels in the production of spicy and characterful red blends based on Grenache, Syrah, and other indigenous varieties. The region also produces rich and aromatic whites and rosés.
With bold fruit flavors and accents of sweet spice, red Rhône blends originated from France’s southern Rhône Valley. Grenache, supported by Syrah and Mourvèdre typically form the base of the blend, while Carignan, Cinsault and Counoise often come in to play. With some creative interpretation, Rhône blends have also become popular in Priorat, Washington, Australia and California.
In the Glass
The taste profile of a Rhône blend will vary according to its individual components, as each variety brings something different to the glass. Grenache is the lightest in color but contributes plenty of ripe red fruit and a plush texture. Syrah supplies dark fruit flavors, along with savory, spicy and earthy notes. Mourvèdre is responsible for a floral perfume and earthy flavor as well as structure and a healthy dose of color. New World examples tend to be fruit-forward in style, while those from the Old World will often have more earth, structure and herbal components on top of ripe red and blue fruit.
Rhône red blends typically make for very food-friendly wines. These can work with a wide variety of meat-based dishes, playing equally well with beef, pork, lamb or game. Braised beef cheeks, grilled steak or sausages, roasted pork and squab are all fine pairings.
Some regions like to put their own local spin on the red Rhône blend—for example, in Australia’s Barossa Valley, Shiraz is commonly blended with Cabernet Sauvignon to add structure, tannin and a long finish. Grenache-based blends from Priorat often include Carignan (known locally as Cariñena) and Syrah, but also international varieties like Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon. In California, anything goes, and it is not uncommon to see Petite Sirah make an appearance.