The southern Rhône is home to France’s richest reds. And this new release hails from Thierry Ferlay, a Châteauneuf star who’s won more gold medals than any other winemaker in the region. (And thanks to a newly forged partnership with Philippe Cambie – aka Robert Parker’s 2010 Winemaker of the Year and recipient of 15 100-point scores for his wines – we’re expecting that medal tally to skyrocket. Watch this space.)
Thierry crafted this limited-edition Côtes-du-Rhône to celebrate the amazing 2016 harvest, which Master of Wine Jancis Robinson hails as “one of the greatest vintages.” He hand harvested his best parcels of grapes from 50-plus-year-old vines (which have miserly yields, but ultra-concentrated flavors). And it was awarded gold medals by judges at three of France’s top wine shows. This classic blend of Grenache, Syrah, and Mourvèdre is a dead-ringer for Châteauneuf – and its powerful, dark fruit flavors.
In the glass, look forward to sumptuous red and black fruits (cherry, blackberry, plum) balanced by an intriguing minerality, silky-smooth tannins, and touches of black pepper/vanilla on the unforgettably long finish. Thinking about a dinner match? We suggest a sausage-based dish (sausage and mushroom gratin, for example), or traditional cassoulet.
Limited production and what’s sure to be very high demand mean you should place your orders now to avoid missing out.
Missa Capozzo, Boston Wine School Educator, WSET3, FWS
The 2016 Le Prince de Courthezon Cotes du Rhone Prestige is a complex gem with velvety tannins on the palate that will shine paired with smoky BBQ, any sausage based dish, and a nice aged sharp cheddar. This wine could benefit from decanting prior to serving.