Domaine Brunely Vacqueyras Tour Aux Cailles 2012
Blend: 90% Grenache and 10% Syrah
Domaine Brunely is located in Sarrians, a small village in Vaucluse, between Rhone and Ventoux. Since the 1990s Charles Carichon, who took over from his father, has not stopped from modernizing the equipment and also increasing the production. Several appellations are spread over 70 hectares, which allows for the domain to present a varied range of the Rhone Valley crus, in red, whites and roses, all vinified and bottled at the property.
This charming appellation within the Côtes du Rhône Villages was second only to Gigondas to earn its own village appellation status. Its wines may be red, rosé or white—though hardly any is white. Its high winemaking standards follow many of the same rules as Chateauneuf-du-Pape. But for Vacqueyras red wines, half of the grapes have to be Grenache and the remainder is usually a combination of Syrah, Mourvedre and Cinsault.
While they can be robust and rustic in style, typically a great Vacqueyras red combines delicate aromas with intense fruit and a bright, crisp texture. They certainly don’t lack any character and show an abundance of black cherry, wild berry, plum, fig, baking spice, and a touch of game or smoke.
With bold fruit flavors and accents of sweet spice, Grenache, Syrah and Mourvèdre form the base of the classic Rhône Red Blend, while Carignan, Cinsault and Counoise often come in to play. Though they originated from France’s southern Rhône Valley, with some creative interpretation, Rhône blends have also become popular in other countries. Somm Secret—Putting their own local spin on the Rhône Red Blend, those from Priorat often include Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon. In California, it is not uncommon to see Petite Sirah make an appearance.