Old School Red Rhone Blend: Plums and Lavender

The 2017 Vacqueyras is a lush, velvety delight.

The Clos du Joncuas might be the most exciting recent find in our portfolio. Based in Gigondas in the Southern Rhône, sisters Dany and Carol Chastan learned their craft from their parents and grandparents, and have themselves been farming organically for 40 years.

This is old school winemaking: ambient yeasts, no oak (not even foudres), 100% whole cluster, no fining or filtering. It sounds like a recipe for a big rustic wine, but the Chastan sisters somehow managed to produce wines of superb texture and subtlety.

We don’t know what goes into their alchemy, but it’s pretty easy to like what comes out.

Joncuas’s Gigondas cuvées are magnificent and worth every penny, but today we’re focused on their slightly simpler cuvée: Vacqueyras. We were delighted to find the 2017 still in stock: with a few extra years in the bottle under today it’s smooth, generous, and overperforming for its class.

Made from Grenache and a splash of Mourvèdre, this wine resembles a cool inky Syrah, even though it’s absent from the blend. A floral nose gives way to ripe raspberries, lavender, sweet plums and earth. This is rich wine whose first impression is nonetheless freshness. It finishes smooth, leaving an inky blue-black perfume on the palate.


Joncuas Vacqueyras 2017
bottle price: $28

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