Domaine des Escaravailles ~ La Galopine Côtes du Rhône AC 2015

Domaine des Escaravailles ~ La Galopine Côtes du Rhône AC 2015
£22.00 / bottle£250.80 / case (12 bottles)

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Country: France
Region: Rhône
Style: Aromatic Whites
Wine Types: New Wines
Wine Types: White Wines
Drink: Now to 2020
Oaked
Cork
ABV: 14%

Tasting Notes

The story

I have wanted to add a white Rhône wine to the portfolio for some time and it was on a visit in September 2017 that I found the perfect white Côtes du Rhône - and it was at Domaine des Escaravailles whose red wine from the same Côtes du Rhône sub-region, La Ponce Rasteau, I have stocked for a couple of previous vintages. A warning - do not cycle there as I did as the hill up to the Domaine is long and steep - plus you can't carry much home with you. But the views at the top were well worth it.

domaine-des-escaravailles-view.jpg

Escaravailles is the name for beetles in the local dialect, Occitan
, hence the beetle on the label and on the cork of this bottle; it is also said to be a nickname for black-robed monks that used to tend the vineyards in days gone by.   This small winery, in the same family since 1953, is situated high up in the Rasteau region.


The wine

The wine is produced from local grapes Roussane (40%), Marsanne (40%) and the balance, Viognier and yet it reminded me of a fabulous white Burgundy; after tasting it I was told by genial winemaker, Gilles Ferran, that he calls it his Burgundy. Often blended in Northern Rhône white wines Hermitage and Crozes-Hermitage as well as in Languedoc-Roussillon Roussanne brings acidity and perfume whilst Marsanne gives the wine its body. Viognier adds floral and fruit aromas and flavours.

You will find pear, ripe yellow apples and a touch of acacia honey and nuts. The grapes involved mean that there is perhaps more fruit than a Burgundy but the elegant structure and smooth, rounded, texture were simply sublime. High & steep vineyards on stony chalky soil, lees-ageing and a very short spell in oak during a cool temperature fermentation are partly responsible for the complex flavours. This really was the best white wine I tasted on that trip to the Vaucluse region of Provence.

Food Pairing

This wine is great as an aperitif but because of its structure it will match well with a range of foods including richer dishes in creamy sauces. The producer specifically suggests truffle risotto, butternut squash soup, fish in sauce and goats cheese.

Producer's Notes

"Pale yellow with hints of gold. The nose displays notes of grilled almond, white flowers and honey. In the mouth there is a perfect balance between acidity and roundness."

A super Rhône white wine from Roussanne, Marsanne and Viognier - and very Burgundy-esque in style; elegant, smooth and fresh

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