2016 Domaine d' Andezon Cotes-du-Rhone les Vignerons d’Estezargues

Year: 2016
Appellation: Rhone
Country: France
Wine Advocate: 91
Jeb Dunnick: 89
Red Wine
Alcohol by Volume: 14.0%
Price :

100% Syrah

"Long-time American readers should already know this wine, as it has been a staple in the Eric Solomon portfolio for more than a decade. The 2016 Cotes du Rhone Andezon is 100% Syrah, aged entirely in tank. It's a lush, medium to full-bodied wine bursting with ripe blackberries and blueberries. No, it doesn't have the peppery spice of Syrah from the northern Rhône, but it does have enough cola-like spicy complexity to warrant an outstanding rating. Drink it over the next 3-4 years.

Thanks to importers like Eric Solomon and Jenny & François Selections and the deft winemaking touch of Denis Deschamps, the small cave cooperative in Estezargues has become a destination for bargain-seekers in the Southern Rhône. When I caught up with Deschamps in late August, the 2017 harvest was in full swing—the earliest and smallest in the co-op's history. We talked more about the current-release 2016s, a vintage he said is very interesting for Grenache, which isn't always easy to ripen well in this corner of the Côtes du Rhône. The area around Signargues is better known for the quality of its Syrah. All of the wines are made and aged in tank, and at the winery, almost all sell for under €8, making them notable values even after taking the three-tier system's markups into account." (WA)

"Always a great value, the unoaked 2016 Andezon is a Syrah dominated cuvée that reminds me of a quality Cornas. Black olive, currants, black cherries, licorice, and peppery herbs give way to a medium-bodied, fresh, lively Syrah that’s going to offering solid drinking for 3-4 years." (JD)

Winery Notes:
In 1994 Eric Solomon visited the Vignerons d’Estézargues and met a young, passionate director/winemaker named Jean-François Nicq. By the end of the day, they had decided on a custom bottling of old vine syrah from one of their best parcels, Andezon. This opaque-black, blockbuster Syrah could have been a top Northern Rhone wine, á la Cornas. What a find! Previously sold in bulk (vinous suicide) to a very famous producer in the Rhone Valley, Eric jumped at the opportunity and over two decades later it remains one of the core items for Eric Solomon Selections.

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