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Domaine Sainte Rose Le Pinacle Syrah 2011

Syrah/Shiraz from Languedoc-Roussillon, France
    14% ABV
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    14% ABV

    Winemaker Notes

    Opaque, almost black red color. Magnificently rich plum jam and liquorice aromas with hints of dark chocolate on the nose. The 2011 shows big, expressive and intense flavors on the palate. Black fruit dominates but is combined with mocha and coffee, which provides a round, smooth finish. Drink now until 2024. After two years the wine will develop more rich notes and hints of truffle.

    Le Pinacle or ‘the pinnacle’ is the highest point of the tower on the Chateau at Domaine Sainte Rose thus, symbolically, this superbly structured Syrah is the top of our red wine range. The wine is made in the Cotes Rotie style of the Rhone Valley thus the Syrah was co-fermented with 5% of the white grape variety Viognier. After gentle extraction and pressing, this wine spent twelve months ageing in French oak barrels.

    Blend: 95% Syrah, 5% Viognier

    Critical Acclaim

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    Domaine Sainte Rose

    Domaine Sainte Rose

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    Domaine Sainte Rose, Languedoc-Roussillon, France
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    Domaine Sainte Rose has a rich history of railing against the status quo. Sainte Rose herself, whose statue stands in the Orangerie in the back garden of the Chateau, championed the cause of Catholicism when it was under attack from Holy Roman Emperor Fredrick II. How appropriate given our current positioning against the traditional wine empires. It's also been a place where journeys begin, as in the 12th century, it was a refuge for Pilgrims on their way to Santiago de Compostela.

    The current journey is no less arduous. It began in 2002 when we, Charles and Ruth Simpson, bought the Domaine with an ambition to create outstanding wine. And we are ambitious people, each giving up high-flying careers to pursue our dream. And so far, so good, with a few bumps along the way. From our 33 hectare vineyard we have produced wines that have won critical acclaim. Jancis Robinson and Tim Atkins are but two of our admirers. You can read their reviews along with the wine medals we've won and plaudits received from other critics on the individual wine pages.

    We're not ones to get into the often confusing and elevated language of wine making, but we do feel it necessary to mention our land, our terroir. The vineyard spreads from the clay/limestone soils found along the banks of the River Thongue up onto the gravelly soil of the plateau. We work entirely in the Vin De Pays or what is now Indication Geographique Protégé (IGP) system, which allows us to plant the grape varieties that we think you the customer wants. We classify all our wines as IGP Cotes de Thongue due to the situation of the Domaine right beside the river.

    Languedoc-Roussillon

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    An extensive appellation producing a diverse selection of good-quality and value-priced wines, Languedoc-Roussillon is one of the world’s largest wine-producing region, spanning the Mediterranean coast from the Spanish border to Rhône. Languedoc forms the eastern half of the larger appellation, while Roussillon is in the west; the two actually have quite distinct personalities but are typically grouped together. Languedoc’s terrain is generally flat coastal plains, with a warm Mediterranean climate and a frequent risk of drought. Roussillon, on the other hand, is defined by the rugged Pyrenees mountains and near-constant sunshine.

    Virtually every style of wine is made in this expansive region. Dry wines are often blends, and varietal choice is strongly influenced by the neighboring Rhône Valley. For reds and rosés, the primary grapes include Grenache, Syrah, Carignan, Cinsault, and Mourvèdre. White varieties include Grenache Blanc, Muscat, Ugni Blanc, Vermentino, Maccabéo, Clairette, Piquepoul and Bourbelenc.

    International varieties are also planted in large numbers here, in particular Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon. In Roussillon, excellent sweet wines are made from Muscat and Grenache in Rivesaltes, Banyuls and Maury. The key region for sparkling wines here is Limoux, where Blanquette de Limoux is believed to have been the first sparkling wine made in France, even before Champagne. Crémant de Limoux is produced in a more modern style.

    Syrah/Shiraz

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    Marked by unmistakable aromatics, a savory palate, and an elegant texture, Syrah is capable of producing fascinatingly complex and long-lived wines with a stunning purple hue. Native to the Northern Rhône, Syrah’s best examples are found in Hermitage and Côte-Rôtie. It is also an important component of the GSM blends of the Southern Rhône and beyond, alongside Grenache and Mourvèdre. Both varietal Syrah and GSM blends are common in Australia and California and are gaining popularity in Washington State. In Australia, Syrah is known by the synonym Shiraz, which tends to indicate a bolder, fruit-driven style of wine, and is occasionally blended with Cabernet Sauvignon for added depth and structure.

    In the Glass

    At its best, Syrah shows aromas and flavors of purple fruits, fragrant violets, baking spice, white pepper, smoke, and even bacon fat. Many examples from California aim to recreate this savory style, while others focus more on concentrated fruit flavors. In Australia, under the name Shiraz, it shines as that country’s unofficial signature red grape, producing deep, dark, intense, and often jammy reds.

    Perfect Pairings

    Cool-climate Syrah, with its peppery spices, is a natural match with flavorful Moroccan-spiced lamb dishes, where the spice is more about flavor than heat. With Australian Shiraz, grown in warmer regions, heavy meat dishes with abundant protein and fat are a necessity to match the intensity of the wine.

    Sommelier Secret

    Due to the success of Australian “Shiraz,” this synonym for Syrah has been adopted by winemakers throughout the world. If the label says “Shiraz,” you can typically expect a plush, fruity, and potent wine made in the Australian style. New World "Syrah" will generally more closely resemble the French style.

    AUT11DSRSYR_2011 Item# 364379