Category Archives: Rhone

Domaine Lombard Grand Chêne Côtes du Rhône

Braised Impulse

Domaine Lombard 2014 “Grand Chêne” Côtes du Rhône Brézème, France

Fellow wine lovers, within the Southern Rhone Valley of France there lies a specific village known as Brézème. It’s name is derived from the French word for “braise”, in reference to the area’s baking warm weather. Brézème bears the soils of the Southern Rhone (where Grenache blends are the standard), but the climate of the Northern Rhone (where single varietal Syrah wines are the norm). This unique confluence of climate and soil makes the village one of few places in the Southern Rhone from which you can grab a 100% Syrah wine, such as those of Domaine Lombard.

Domaine Lombard 2014 “Grand Chêne” Côtes du Rhône Brézème $22.99

Decades ago, the wines of this village were nearly made extinct by phylloxera, a bug that likes to eat the vines and their roots. Sylvette Lombard was a key contributing in helping to restore Brézème, ensuring that it doesn’t disappear from the wine map for good- while also establishing Domaine Lombard’s place in winemaking history.

Domaine Lombard’s “Grand Chêne” Côtes du Rhône is sourced exclusively from the Les Chassis Vineyard, within the village of Brézème, and is 100% Syrah. It’s fairly nimble on its feet, not overly heavy, making a great red wine for warmer weather and backyard entertaining. It sees no oak treatment, rather it’s aged for 12 months in large concrete vessels, to help soften its structure and build depth of character. The nose has hints of violets, hickory, and freshly steeped tea leaves, while the smooth and medium bodied palate offers notes of cured meats and dark cherries, with a bit of blood orange and sandalwood chiming in on the background. A well balanced and classically styled Rhone red- right up my alley!

Domaine Lombard 2014 “Grand Chêne” Côtes du Rhône Brézème

Domaine Lombard 2014 “Grand Chêne” Côtes du Rhône Brézème

Click here to order the Domaine Lombard Côtes du Rhône Brézème

Region: Côtes du Rhône AOC, Southern Rhone Valley, France

Vineyard(s): Les Chassis Vineyard. Elevations as High as 900 ft, Vines as Old as 20 Years

Grape(s): 100% Syrah

Aging: 12 Months in Concrete Tanks

Drinkability: Now through 2020

Body: Medium

Drink This if you Like: Châteauneuf-du-Pape

Food Pairing: Rack of Lamb


Nicolas Perrin 2012 Saint-Joseph

Collaborative Impulse

Maison Nicolas Perrin 2012 Saint-Joseph

Fellow wine lovers, I don’t think we’ve featured any wines from the Rhone Valley of France yet. No worries, I found a really good one for, just right for today. It’s a new collaborative project, done by two well known wine producers in the Rhone Valley. One partner is the Perrin Family, the people who own Chateau de Beaucastel in the Southern Rhone, perhaps the most famous of all Châteauneuf-du-Pape – also it’s a member of the Perrin Family who is in charge of making the Chateau Miraval Rosé from Provence, the one owned by Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie (aka Brangelina). The Perrin family has teamed up with the likes of Nicolas Jaboulet of the Northern Rhone, a highly respected producer of Syrah from the villages of Hermitage and Crozes-Hermitage.

Maison Nicolas Perrin 2012 Saint-Joseph $29.99 (Regularly $37)

Saint-Joseph is a village in the Northern Rhone Valley of France, where Syrah in King, near other village such as Croze-Hermitage, Cote-Rotie, and Hermitage. Here they only do Syrah, and virtually nothing else – just sticking to what they’re good at.

This is a big, chewy, chunky wine that goes on, and on… and on. I shared a bottle of it with a few friends, and we agreed that it was only just starting to open up after several hours. It shows lot’s of concentration, with deep, dark, ruby red color. It’s juicy, with lots of red berries, cherries, and blackberry pepper compote. It hints at a barnyard and leathery quality, with a tannic grip in the finish that helps it pair very well with fatty meats – I had it with Rib Eye Steak. Over time, it opens up with more ripe fruits, more than your average French red wine, but still remains distinctly Rhone, exhibiting a certain sense of place. It’s bright up front, lush and silky in the mid-palate, and has a firm finish which softens up with time. There are notes of wild black raspberry bush, and hints of red currant. After several hours, it becomes meaty and savory, with hints of strawberry jam, tobacco, dried figs, and raisins.

Nicolas Perrin 2012 Saint Joseph

Nicolas Perrin 2012 Saint Joseph

We have just 2 cases available, first come first serve.

Click here to order the Nicolas Perrin Saint-Joseph

Region: Saint-Joseph, Northern Rhone Valley, France
Grape: 100% Syrah
Aging: In 1 and 2 year old French Oak Barrels for 10 Months
Drinkability: Now through 2019
Body: Full Bodied
Alcohol: 13.5% by volume
Drink This if you Like: Rhone, Syrah, Valpolicella, Amarone, Hermitage
Press: 91 Points Wine Spectator, 90 Points Wine Enthusiast Magazine
Food Pairings: Roast Beef, Cigars, Rib Eye
Availability: 2 cases