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Jean-Luc Colombo Cotes du Rhone Les Abeilles Blanc 2012

Rhone White Blends from Cotes du Rhone, Rhone, France
    13% ABV
    • WS89
    • WE89
    • RP87
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    13% ABV

    Winemaker Notes

    Light straw color. This wine has a floral and fruity bouquet. The taste is complex, crisp and well-balanced. This is a food-friendly wine which perfectly matches grilled lamb, pork and assorted cheeses.

    Blend: 80% Clairette 20% Roussanne

    Bee Helpful: For every bottle of Jean-Luc Colombo Cotes du Rhone Les Abeilles ("THE BEES" in French) purchased, a donation will support honey bee research and education.

    Help save the honey bees! Honey bee colonies are collapsing at an alarming rate. People rely on honey bees to pollinate more than 90% of flowering crops - including many of the fruit and food items we eat. Research is needed to help understand the causes of honey bee declines and restore and protect healthy colonies.

    Critical Acclaim

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    Jean-Luc Colombo

    Jean-Luc Colombo

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    Jean-Luc Colombo, Cotes du Rhone, Rhone, France
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    A native of Marseilles, Colombo first developed a strong admiration for the wines of the Rhône Valley in the late 1970s as a pharmacy student. A devotee of the Syrah grape, Colombo was convinced that the northern Rhône appellation of Cornas offered enormous and, at the time, unrecognized potential for producing super-quality Syrah wines. After earning degrees in pharmacy and enology, Colombo and his wife Anne, also a pharmacist and enologist, moved to Cornas, fully intending to support themselves as pharmacists while developing a wine consultancy on the side.

    It was not long before Colombo began purchasing and cultivating his own vineyards - first in Cornas then throughout the Rhône Valley and Languedoc - leading to the establishment in 1994 of Vins Jean-Luc Colombo. The wines of Vins Jean-Luc Colombo are all sourced from Colombo's own vineyards and from carefully selected domains under his direct consultation.

    Colombo has not limited his magical sphere of influence to Cornas. The company now embraces 27 wines representing major appellations of the Rhône Valley as well as the Languedoc and Roussillon regions of southern France. Most recently, Colombo has returned to his roots for his latest winemaking venture in the Côte Bleue district near Marseilles.

    Cotes du Rhone

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    Typically thought of as a baby Chateauneuf-du-Pape, the term Côtes du Rhone 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 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 varieties include most of the Chateauneuf-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.

    Rhône White Blends

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    Full-bodied and flavorful, white Rhône blends originate from France’s Rhône Valley. Today these blends are also becoming popular in other regions, proving most successful in Spain, Australia and California. Typically some combination of Grenache blanc, Marsanne, Roussanne and Viognier form the basis of a white Rhône blend with varyiong degrees of flexibility depending on the exact appellation.

    In the Glass

    Each variety contibutes something unique and different. Round, textural Grenache blanc gives green apple and white stone fruit flavors; weighty Marsanne adds structure and honeysuckle aromas; russet-colored Roussanne lends intriguing herbal, tea-like notes while Viognier provides a creamy texture and elegant aromatics. The flavor of the final wine will depend on the chosen components of the blend and their respective proportions.

    Perfect Pairings

    White Rhône blends are quite versatile food pairing wines and can work with light to medium rich meals that might often be matched to red wines. Heavier fish dishes with bold seasoning like grilled swordfish with caper butter or baked, herb-crusted mahi mahi are natural allies for these flavorful wines. Other ideal dishes include roast pork in mustard sauce, poached lobster with beurre blanc, or a rich and savory vegetable quiche. `

    Sommelier Secret

    In the Northern Rhône, blends of Marsanne and Roussanne are common in the appellations of St.-Joseph, Crozes-Hermitage, Hermitage and St-Péray. Condrieu and Château-Grillet can produce single-varietal Viognier only. The Southern Rhône, on the other hand, has much more variety, with many more permitted grapes including the ones named above as well as Bourboulenc, Clairette, Picpoul and Ugni Blanc.

    SWS97836_2012 Item# 123535