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Jean-Luc Colombo Cotes du Rhone Les Abeilles 1999

Rhone Red Blends from Cotes du Rhone, Rhone, France
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Winemaker Notes

Production Area: From ancient terraced vineyards comprised of gravel on a bed of sandy clay in the area of Cairanne and Gigondas in the Southern Rhône Valley.

Grape Varieties: 50% Grenache, 30% Syrah, 20% Mourvèdre from 25 year-old vines.Vinification: The grapes are harvested manually, then de-stemmed, lightly crushed and fermented in stainless steel tanks. The wine is aged 20% in new oak for 9 months before bottling.

Description:Color - Intense purple color Bouquet - Aromas of small red fruits, leather and spicesTaste - Liquorice, spicy flavors and silky tannins.Serving Suggestions: A friendly wine which will perfectly match grilled lamb, pork, and cheeses.

Critical Acclaim

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Jean-Luc Colombo

Jean-Luc Colombo

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Jean-Luc Colombo, , France - Rhone
Jean-Luc Colombo
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.

South Africa

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An underappreciated wine-producing country currently undergoing a renaissance, South Africa has a surprisingly long and rich history considering its status as part of the “New World” of wine. In the mid-17th century, the lusciously sweet dessert wines of Constantia were highly prized by the European aristocracy. Since then, the South African wine industry has experienced some setbacks due to the phylloxera infestation of the late 1800s and political difficulties throughout the following century. Today, however, it is increasingly responsible for high-quality wines that are helping to put the country back on the international wine map. Wine production is mainly situated around Cape Town, where the climate is generally warm to hot, but the Benguela current from Antarctica provides the brisk ocean breezes necessary for steady ripening. Similarly, cooler high-elevation vineyard sites offer climatic diversity.

South Africa’s wine regions are divided into region, then smaller districts, and finally wards, but the country’s wine styles are differentiated more by grape variety than by region. Pinotage, a cross between Pinot Noir and Cinsault, is the country’s “signature” grape, responsible for earthy, gamey reds. When Pinotage is blended with other red varieties, like Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Syrah, or Pinot Noir (all commonly vinified alone as well), it is often labeled as a “Cape Blend.” Chenin Blanc (locally known as “Steen”) dominates white wine production, with Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc following behind.

Cabernet Sauvignon

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A noble variety bestowed with both power and concentration, Cabernet Sauvignon is sometimes referred to as the “king” of red grapes. It can be somewhat unapproachable early in its youth but has the potential to age beautifully, with the ability to last fifty years or more at its best. Small berries and tough skins provide its trademark firm tannic grip, while high acidity helps to keep the wine fresh for decades. Cabernet Sauvignon flourishes in temperate climates like Bordeaux's Medoc region (and in St-Emillion and Pomerol, where it plays a supporting role to Merlot). The top Médoc producers use Cabernet Sauvignon for their wine’s backbone, blending it with Merlot and smaller amounts of Cabernet Franc, Malbec, and/or Petit Verdot. On its own, Cabernet Sauvignon has enjoyed great success throughout the world, particularly in the Napa Valley, and is responsible for some of the world’s most prestigious and sought-after “cult” wines.

In the Glass

High in color, tannin, and extract, Cabernet Sauvignon expresses notes of blackberry, cassis, plum, currant, spice, and tobacco. In Bordeaux and elsewhere in the Old World you'll find the more earthy, tannic side of Cabernet, where it's typically blended to soften tannins and add complexity. In warmer regions like California and Australia, you can typically expect more ripe fruit flavors upfront.

Perfect Pairings

Cabernet Sauvignon is right at home with rich, intense meat dishes—beef, lamb, and venison, in particular—where its opulent fruit and decisive tannins make an equal match to the dense protein of the meat. With a mature Cabernet, opt for tender, slow-cooked meat dishes.

Sommelier Secrets

Despite the modern importance and ubiquity of Cabernet Sauvignon, it is actually a relatively young variety. In 1997, DNA revealed the grape to be a spontaneous crossing of Cabernet Franc and Sauvignon Blanc which took place in 17th century southwestern France.

LAU2023617_1999 Item# 48940

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