2018 Aux Lieux-Dits Domaine Santa Duc
|Grapes||Mourvèdre, Grenache, Syrah, Cinsault|
Currently more floral and expressive on the nose than the 2017, although less concentrated, the 2018 Gigondas Aux Lieux-Dits boasts hints of peppery spice, garrigue, a hint of roses and blueberry and raspberry fruit. It's medium to full-bodied, silky and taut, striking a good balance between ripeness and acidity, particularly noticeable on the long, mouthwatering finish. Drinking range: 2020 - 2030 Rating: 91 Joe Czerwinski, www.robertparker.com (Oct 2020)
*Case price discount: Mix any 12 bottles (or 9l equivalent) of wine or 6 bottles of Champagne, Spirits, Sweet Wine or Fortified to get the 'case price' for each bottle.
This cuvee reflects all our locations in Gigondas. It gets its character through the connection between eight different vineyards and four typical grape varieties of the Rhône Valley. Alluvial soils, red and blue clay, as well as marl lime, add to the taste and fragrance of this elegant and expressive wine as do the grape varieties of Grenache, Syrah, Mourvèdre and Cinsault. Each terroir contributes to the overall picture with its character. Typically characterized by fresh fruit and noble, vegetal aromas in its youth, it usually develops a bouquet of exotic spices after a few years of bottle storage. Varieties: Grenache 75%, Syrah 10%, Mourvèdre 13%, Cinsault 2%. (40 years old vines). Vinification: Hand picked and sorted, partly destemmed, short maceration, soft punching-down and pumping over. Ageing: The wine ages during 18 months, first in large oak tuns, then in concrete tanks before bottling. Terroir: Alluvial, quaternary, stony red clay soils in the localities called : Les Hautes Garrigues, Les Carbonnières, Les Rocassières, Santa Duc, Les Pailleroudas, Les Routes. Blue clay in the locality called : Goujard et Plane. Calcareous marly soils from the Cretaceous in the locality called: Derrière Vieille.Winemaker's notes (Jan 2021)
Domaine Santa Duc
The name of Domaine Santa Duc has been at the pinnacle of wine in Gigondas since the mid 80’s when, under the firm guidance of the irrepressible and charismatic Yves Gras, they gained international recognition and high scores from wine critics. They have, for some time, been a reference point for quality and style, from one of the most consistently brilliant Crus in the Southern Rhone.
The future of the domaine is now in the very capable hands of Yves' son Benjamin, who becomes the 6th generation of the family to head up the estate. To borrow from Matt Walls ‘Yves Gras and his son Benjamin are very different characters. Yves has the air of a retired East End enforcer but Benjamin is bookish and jovial’. It would appear from our recent tastings that the estate is in safe hands. Having a respectable CV that boasts stages at Domaine de la Romanée Conti and Vega Sicilia, and visits to nearly every wine producing country in the world, he bring fresh views and ideas, whilst respecting the traditions of his father's work and the past.
The entire 30 hectare estate is now biodynamically farmed and certified, with an emphasis on total respect for nature in the vineyard. They comprise a patchwork of prime vineyard sites in Gigondas totalling 13 hectares, including two brilliant lieux-dits, Les Hautes Garrigues & Clos Derriere Vieille, that bring out the very best expression of Grenache, Syrah & Mourvedre. There is also 6 hectares of prized parcels in Chateauneuf-du-Pape, that have gained high praise in a short space of time. The balance is spread across Vacqueyras and Cotes du Rhone. Nearly all the vines are trained goblet, with a program of massal selection ongoing to ensure healthy vines from older rootstocks.
The wine making philosophy, like so many now, is as little intervention as possible. Stainless steel fermentation, with a proportion of stems and a short maceration followed by ageing in a mixture of large foudres and terracotta amphorae. The wines are fresh, elegant, pure, dark fruited and long lived although approachable in their youth too. Be in no doubt, these are some of the best wines being made in the southern Rhone.
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