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Gorgeous, Velvety 93-point Gigondas: “Remarkable Value”

For years, Gigondas was a savvy wine collector’s secret: near-Châteauneuf-level complexity and richness, at a substantial discount. But even as its name has spread and prices have crept up, the price-value ratio in Gigondas remains unusually good. As Vinous’s Josh Raynolds put it after tasting several hundred cuvées recently, “in the context of the world’s best wines, almost every Gigondas…

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Delightful, Spiced $25 Northern Rhône Syrah

Praise continues to pour in for the Domaine Patrick & Christophe Bonnefond. Their Northern Rhône reds are pure syrah, and display an exquisite balance of texture, fruit, subtlety and depth. The wines continue to improve each year -- Josh Raynolds of Vinous declared his tasting this year “the single most impressive set of bottlings I have had here.”

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Velvety New 93-pt Cornas: Syrah at its Most Intense

Cornas is a tiny appellation of only 50 growers. By rules and heritage, it’s the Northern Rhône: its wines are pure, unblended Syrah. But in spirit and character, it’s not far from the South. Cornas (which means “scorched earth” in Celtic) harvests a week earlier than Hermitage (just 20 minutes north), and the vertiginous slopes produce wines with a southern,…

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Exquisite 7-Year-Old Côte Rôtie

The impossibly steep hillsides of the Côte Rôtie seem like the last place in the world to grow vines. With slopes reaching 60 degrees in places, all field work — planting, pruning, treating, harvesting — must be done entirely by hand. Every time we visit we wonder aloud what on earth would drive people to plant vines here.

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Fresh, Springtime Northern Rhône White

For many years at the start of our tastings, winemaker Denis Basset would give us a small taste of his only white cuvée. “Just to set the palate,” he’d explain, before continuing on to his rich, syrah-based reds. The white was always lovely — floral and fresh, beautifully expressive, and a perfect way to start a tasting.

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Magnificent, Layered Gigondas to Rival Châteauneuf

Compared with most regions in France, the Southern Rhône is an easy place to make wine. There’s plenty of sun and warmth, the grape varietals are generally hardy, and the northwesterly Mistral wind keeps the grapes dry and maladies at bay. It’s still hard work, for sure, but lots of winemakers we know in Burgundy look longingly at the conditions…

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“Awfully Impressive” New 93-point Côte Rôtie, $58

Patrick and Christophe Bonnefond’s wines somehow keep getting better. They’ve enjoyed a string of excellent recent vintages in the vines, but they also seem to be hitting their stride in the cellar. Once firmly in the ripe, oaky, “extroverted” camp that made them a darling of Robert Parker, the domaine has shifted towards subtler expression in recent years: less time…

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“Seductive,” “Loaded” New 92-pt Cornas

Cornas is a tiny appellation of only 50 growers. By rules and heritage, it’s the Northern Rhône: its wines are pure, unblended Syrah. But in spirit and character, it’s not far from the South. Cornas (which means “scorched earth” in Celtic) harvests a week earlier than Hermitage (just 20 minutes north), and the vertiginous slopes produce wines with a southern,…