Saint-Damien Gigondas Vielles Vignes 2011, $29.99/bottle
For Southern Rhone drinkers, Santa Duc, St. Cosme and St. Damien are clearly the top 3 producers in the town of Gigondas. Wines from Gigondas, where it is warmer than Chateauneuf-du-Pape, are known for their power and purity of fruit. St. Damien makes wines from extremely low yields (20 hectolitres per hectare), the wines spend 1 year in large oak foudres, and are finally bottled unfined and unfiltered. The 2011 Gigondas Vielles Vignes is 100% Grenache from vines over 40 years of age. Weighing in at over 15% ABV, this is a big, sturdy wine that needs some time in the air to unravel and show its stuff. Keep in mind that the Parker review below was written before the wine had been released, hence the score range of 89-92 points. I drank this wine multiple times over the weekend and it is, at least in my opinion, easily a 92 point wine.
“The 2011 Gigondas Vieilles Vignes (100% Grenache) is a dense, well-made, ripe effort displaying lots of licorice, strawberry, kirsch, lavender and balsam wood characteristics. Full, rich and dense with terrific fruit intensity, it should turn out to be outstanding since there is no fining or filtration at this estate. It will age well for 7-8 years. ”
89-92 Points, Robert Parker
6+ bottles, 10% off, $26.99/bottle