A hearty Rhone wine

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‘Mon Coeur’ Cote du Rhone 2010 is made by the noted J L Chave winemaker family of the Rhone valley. Just a brief piece of research tells us that the family have been making wine since 1481 and that the business has passed down the family line for 16 generations. That’s some tradition. Although Dmne. Chave is based in Hermitage, the wine we tried on Sunday was drawn from villages in the southern Rhone; Richard mentioning Cairanne, Vinsobres and Rasteau. The wine had been opened for 45 mins.

Its development was showing in the slight brown rim which edged a garnet, rather than purple, glassful but the intensity of colour was there. The nose was surprisingly slight and not showing any varietal characteristics which, to me, tasting blind, suggested a blend. Fortunately, the palate flavours were there – a touch of Syrah was obvious. It also contains some Grenache. The tannins are well integrated (12 months in oak) and the wine was nicely in balance, big (14% ABV) but not overly so. It developed some farmyard notes the longer it sat in the glass, but was none the worse for those.

A well-made Southern Rhone wine, then, pas exceptionelle, but a good mouthful. The latest vintage, 2014, is available from Yapp, who are very keen on its quality.

[Richard: I think this was from Yapp, at £15, which I thought was a pretty good price until I saw they are selling the 2014 for £14. A very approachable, well balanced wine].

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