Domaine Grand Nicolet Rasteau 2013
In 1989, jean Pierre started to work in the estate at 24 years of age, and in 1999 he took over management of the entire estate. At that time, he asked a dear old friend of his, Philippe Cambie to help him with his wine business.
Today, Jean Pierre is running a 20 ha estate and annually produces nearly 200hl in Cotes du Rhone and 500 hl in Rasteau. The estate is composed mostly of Grenache, Carignan, Syrah, Cinsault and Mourvedre, on clay and limestone soil. Harvest is destemmed at 100% and vinification takes place in concrete tanks and old french oak barrels.
Typically thought of as a baby Chateâuneuf-du-Pape, the term Côtes du Rhône actually doesn’t merely apply to the flatter outskirts of the major southern Rhône appellations, it also includes the fringes of well-respected northern Rhône appellations. White wines can be produced under the appellation name, but very little is actually made.
The region offers some of the best values in France and even some first-rate and age-worthy reds. Red wine varieties include most of the Chateâuneuf-du-Pape varieties like Grenache, Syrah, Mourvedre, Cinsault, and Counoise, as well as Carignan. White grapes grown include Grenache blanc, Roussanne and Viognier, among others.
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.