Prieure de Saint Jean de Bebian 2008

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We have written about this wine before [Richard: actually the 2007] and claimed that it was well-made but too young. It was, therefore, good to revisit the wine probably 30 months later. The wine is an AC Languedoc from a low lying commune north-east of Beziers. It comprises the classic southern Rhone blend of grapes – syrah, grenache and mourvedre. To be frank, I’m not greatly struck by many southern Rhones but, this was a wonderful exception.

Brick red in colour there was a lack of clarity in its looks but the 14.5% ABV was proclaimed by some fairly thick legs. A red fruit nose suggested Pinot but its richness confirmed the Syrah grape element. It was full on and fruity. The palate was powerful – rich and smooth with well-integrated tannins – and pleasure to drink. It had balance and, although not subtle, had good balance and harmony. Those 30 months had made a big difference to the wine – it was a pleasure to drink.

[Richard: this was part of a mixed case of southern French wines from the WS and probably the most expensive at around £20. The was very enjoyable, excellent varietal nose, more complex than many but with lots of fruit, clearly well made, nicely balanced. I have a few of the 2007s left and should revisit them sometime.]

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