Dauvergne Ranvier Gigondas Grand Vin 2012
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When one asks how it all began, François Dauvergne most often responds that “his roots are half in Bordeaux where he grew up and half in the soils of Saint-Polycarpe, next to Limoux, where his family had vines”. He then branched out to the Rhône Valley where he has been for the past 15 years of his career in wine.
As a child, Jean-François Ranvier made his parents blush more than once. In fact, when invited to family friends homes for dinner, little Jean-François couldn’t stop himself from breathing in the aromas in the house and detailing them out load…no matter the quality of the menu. Amateur geologist, he finally chose enology after having earned an agronomist degree. After having directed an enology lab he then took over vinification for a major negociant house in the Rhône Valley. It was here that he would meet and work with François Dauvergne.
In 2004 Dauvergne and Ranvier would leave together to live their dream of creating their own wines, thus making their winery one of the most recognized in the Rhône Valley.
The Southern Rhone region of Gigondas extends northwest from the notably jagged wall of mountains called the Dentelles di Montmirail, whose highest point climbs to about 2,600 feet. The region and its wines have much in common with the neighboring Chateauneuf-du-Pape except that the vineyards of Gigondas exist at higher elevation and its soils, comprised mainly of crumbled limestone from the Dentelles, often produce a more dense and robust Grenache-based red wine.
The region has a history of fine winemaking, extending back to Roman times. But by the 20th century, Gigondas was merely lumped into the less distinct zone of Côtes du Rhône Villages. However, it was first among these satellite villages to earn its own appellation, which occurred in 1971.
Gigondas reds must be between 50 to 100% Grenache with Syrah and Mourvèdre comprising the bulk of the remainder of the blend. They tend express rustic flavors and aromas of wild blackberry, raspberry, fig, plum, as well as juniper, dried herbs, anise, smoke and river rock. The best are bold but balanced, and finish with impressively sexy and velvety tannins.
The Gigondas appellation also produces rosé but no white wines.