Have you read the incredible JancisRobinson.com & Richard Hemming MW review of our Domaine Alary L’Estévenas 2018 Cairanne?

2018 vintage French wine Jancis Robinson MW Masters MW MS Organic wine Rhône Richard Hemming MW Tasting Wine critic

Few wines can compete with Ch de Beaucastel 1978, an iconic Châteauneuf-du-Pape from a legendary vintage – but this unassuming 2018 from the village of Cairanne did exactly that at a recent Rhône tasting I hosted

You can read the full JancisRobinson.com article here

Plenty of ripe fruit, freshness and persistency are the essential characteristics of his wines. Denis’ wines are benchmark Southern Rhônes: full of sun and a joy to drink. Spicy, rich and peppery with warm juicy fruit, his wines are always extremely appealing and a great representation of this region. While Grenache makes up the majority of the vines planted on his 29 hectares of vineyards, he has an old plot of Syrah and uses it judiciously in the cuvée ‘L’Estévenas’. Despite increasing fame and demand, these wines remain great value.

Oh what a Cairanne! Beaucastel-busting brilliance from an underrated gem” 

The Alary family’s involvement in viticulture and wine production dates back as far as 1692, to the reign of Louis XIV. Tradition, passion and ‘savoir fair’ are key elements to tendering vines and maturing wines, and the acquired experience has been passed on from one generation to the next. In all, 10 generations have successively played their part in building this edifice, guided by a healthy respect for nature and for the general environment. Proof of this conviction can be found in a later stage in the development of the vineyard, with Denis’ decision in 2009 to convert to a programme of organic farming, after many years mastering traditional production techniques.

Over the years, he has learnt to understand the different ‘terroirs’ that make up the Cairanne appellation, which was elevated to ‘Cru’ status from the 2015 vintage onwards. South-facing slopes with white and blue clay soils, the lower terraces of the ‘garrigues’, the high plateau with cobbles covering underlying white and red clay, along with the richer soils close to the Plan de Dieu.

Most of Denis’ vines are grown on south-facing slopes, but a few parcels, facing north, ensure freshness and balance in hotter years. Domaine Alary comprises 8 different red grape varieties: Grenache (12ha), Syrah (6ha), Mourvèdre (2ha), Carignan (3ha), Counoise (0.5ha), Cinsault (1ha), Cabernet Sauvignon (1ha) and Merlot (0.5ha). For the white wines, there are 4 grape varieties: Roussanne (1.2ha), Clairette (1ha), Viognier (0.5ha) and Bourboulenc (0.3ha).

Old vines selected from the lieu-dit Estévenas, grown on clay and limestone south-facing slopes. Harvested exclusively by hand, to allow sorting in the vineyard and another trie at the entrance to the cellar. Only the healthiest, ripest grapes are retained. Separate vinification of each of the different grape varieties. Bottled without fining.

Tasting Notes: An elegant nose combines black fruits and spices. mouth, large volumes and lots of smoothness. soft tannins and elegant, melted.

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