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Delas Hermitage Les Bessards 2003

Syrah/Shiraz from Hermitage, Rhone, France
  • RP96
  • WS95
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Winemaker Notes

The Hermitage "Les Bessards" is named after a sub-region of the Hermitage appellation, where the steeply terraced hillside vineyards have an excellent southwestern exposure. They also produce some of the world's most intense, dense wines from the rich Syrah varietal. Delas owns 14 acres in this prized region, which is a large amount by Rhône standards.

This unique cuvée illustrates the enormous potential of this incomparable vineyard. The wine has a deep red color. The nose is aromatic with scents of berries, currants and violets. Les Bessards is rich in the mouth with bold, yet silky tannins and concentrated black cherry/plum fruit. It's an exceptional wine with a firm structure that will benefit from long cellaring.

Critical Acclaim

RP 96
The Wine Advocate

The luxury cuvee, the inky/blue/purple-hued 2003 Hermitage Les Bessards (4,200 bottles; 13.6% alcohol), exhibits a huge perfume of spring flowers, blueberries, blackberries, licorice, and scorched earth. With superb richness, magnificent intensity, and a full-bodied, tannic finish, it will benefit from 5-10 years of cellaring, and should age for 30+ years.

WS 95
Wine Spectator

Has lots of grip, with a very stony undertow carrying notes of wet pebble, sweet earth, licorice, coffee and fig. Pretty lavender and spice box hints flitter in the background as well. Dark and chewy on the finish for now, this needs time to settle into itself. Best from 2009 through 2030.

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Delas

Delas Freres

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Delas Freres, , France - Rhone
Delas
Founded over 160 years ago, Delas Frères was acquired by Champagne Deutz in 1977.

Delas Frères cultivates vineyards on the steep granite slopes of the northern Rhône, in some of the region's most prestigious appellations. Additional grapes are supplied through long-term agreements with southern Rhone growers dedicated to providing only top quality grapes.

Crafted by winemaker Jacques Grange to epitomize finesse and elegance, recent Delas Frères vintages from the vineyards of Hermitage, Crozes-Hermitage, Chateauneuf-du-Pape, Côte Rôtie, Condrieu, Côtes-du-Rhône and Côtes-du-Ventoux have won renewed praise for their intensity of flavor and excellent value.

Nuits-St-Georges

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Pinot Noir

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One of the most difficult yet rewarding grapes to grow, Pinot Noir is commonly referred to by winemakers as the “heartbreak grape.” However, the greatest red wines of Burgundy prove that it is unquestionably worth the effort. More reflective than most varieties of the land on which it is grown, Pinot Noir prefers a cool climate, requires low yields to achieve high quality, and demands care in the vineyard and lots of attention in the winery. It is an important component of Champagne and the only variety permitted in red Burgundy. Pinot Noir enjoys immense popularity internationally, most notably in Oregon, California, and New Zealand.

In the Glass

Pinot Noir Is all about red fruit—strawberry, raspberry, and cherry. It is relatively pale in color with soft tannins and lively acidity. It ranges in body from very light to the heavier side of medium, typically landing somewhere in the middle—giving it extensive possibilities for food pairing. With age (of which the best examples can handle an astounding amount), it can develop hauntingly beautiful characteristics of fresh earth, autumn leaves, and truffles.

Perfect Pairings

Pinot’s healthy acidity cuts through the oiliness of pink-fleshed fish like salmon, ocean trout, and tuna. Its mild mannered tannins don’t fight with spicy food, and give it enough structure to pair with all sorts of poultry—chicken, quail, and especially duck. As the namesake wine of Boeuf Bourguignon, it can even match with heavier fare. Pinot Noir is also very vegetarian-friendly—most notably with any dish that features mushrooms.

Sommelier Secret

Pinot Noir is dangerously drinkable, highly addictive, and has a bad habit of emptying the wallet. Look for affordable but still delicious examples from Germany (as Spätburgunder), Italy (as Pinot Nero), Chile, New Zealand, and France’s Loire Valley and Alsace regions.

LSB101249_2003 Item# 101249

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