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Domaine Santa Duc Aux Lieux Dits Gigondas 2012

Rhone Red Blends from Gigondas, Rhone, France
  • WS91
  • WE91
14.5% ABV
  • JS93
  • RP91
  • WS89
  • RP89
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14.5% ABV

Winemaker Notes

A bright violet color while aromas of currant, dried fig and blackberry waft from the glass. This is a lively, fresh, focused wine, finishing with strong spiciness.

Critical Acclaim

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WS 91
Wine Spectator
Singed bay and savory notes lead the way, adding good energy to the core of black cherry and steeped plum fruit. An iron hint laces up the finish, lending this a racy feel overall. Nicely done. Drink now through 2018.
WE 91
Wine Enthusiast
Yves Gras is one of the appellation’s standard bearers, and this mid-level bottling doesn’t disappoint. He’s toned down the use of oak in recent years, allowing more black cherry fruit to shine, matched by hints of grilled meat, mocha and black olive. It’s full-bodied, mouthfilling and harmonious, with a long, supple finish.
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Domaine Santa Duc

Domaine Santa Duc

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Domaine Santa Duc, Gigondas, Rhone, France
Image of winery
By dint of faith and sheer hard work, the wine-growers of Gigondas have replaced the olive tree with the vine. They have thereby made a name for themselves. Here, wild and uncommon, a bird watches over the domain : the Grand-duc owl which sings, (known as "Canta duc" in Provencal), his name has become over time "Santa Duc."

Domaine Santa Duc was first established in 1874 in the Southern Rhone cru of Gigondas. Yves stopped selling the crop off to négociants in 1985 in favor of bottling his own wine instead. The winery was recently certified organic in 2012. Yves practices de-budding early in the growing season to lend rigor to the fruit, leaf-pulling to increase circulation, and early harvests to preserve freshness. Yves farms 12.5 hectares oflieux-dits throughout Gigondas. Generous, fruity and concentrated, the vines reflect the soil and the way in which they are produced.

Gigondas

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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.

Rhône Blends

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With bold fruit flavors and accents of sweet spice, red Rhône blends originated from France’s southern Rhône Valley. Grenache, supported by Syrah and Mourvèdre typically form the base of the blend, while Carignan, Cinsault and Counoise often come in to play. With some creative interpretation, Rhône blends have also become popular in Priorat, Washington, Australia and California.

In the Glass

The taste profile of a Rhône blend will vary according to its individual components, as each variety brings something different to the glass. Grenache is the lightest in color but contributes plenty of ripe red fruit and a plush texture. Syrah supplies dark fruit flavors, along with savory, spicy and earthy notes. Mourvèdre is responsible for a floral perfume and earthy flavor as well as structure and a healthy dose of color. New World examples tend to be fruit-forward in style, while those from the Old World will often have more earth, structure and herbal components on top of ripe red and blue fruit.

Perfect Pairings

Rhône red blends typically make for very food-friendly wines. These can work with a wide variety of meat-based dishes, playing equally well with beef, pork, lamb or game. Braised beef cheeks, grilled steak or sausages, roasted pork and squab are all fine pairings.

Sommelier Secret

Some regions like to put their own local spin on the red Rhône blend—for example, in Australia’s Barossa Valley, Shiraz is commonly blended with Cabernet Sauvignon to add structure, tannin and a long finish. Grenache-based blends from Priorat often include Carignan (known locally as Cariñena) and Syrah, but also international varieties like Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon. In California, anything goes, and it is not uncommon to see Petite Sirah make an appearance.

PBC9022788_2012 Item# 143811