Saint Cosme, Côte-Rôtie 2018Even before the wine commandeers your senses, the surreal sight of steep terraced vineyards of Côte Rôtie will. French for roasted slope, Côte Rôtie is acclaimed for making a Syrah potent with rich black fruit, tempered by pepper and chocolate with the smoothest of tannins that linger long after the bottle’s gone. The depth of palate can be chalked down to the granite laden slopes that take in dollops of sunshine that properly ripen the fruit while retaining acidity. The Saint Cosme, Côte-Rôtie 2018 scores a flattering 4.3 on Vivino for many good reasons. The full bodied red puts forward perfectly ripe fruit and alluring floral notes, complimented any an aged savoury character and touch of smoke. This gourmet wine the near perfect Syrah that solidifies Rhone Valley credentials as simply the best region to make this ferment.
Saint Cosme, Crozes Hermitage 2020Our highly rated Northern Rhone expression is handpicked from the stable of Chateau Saint Cosme, run lovingly by the Barruol family since 1570. Present owner and winemaker Louis Barruol has spent a lifetime understanding and coaxing brilliance out of every key Rhone appellation and in the Crozes Hermitage, he has produced a wine that ‘encapsulates the gentle, soft feel of the fruit wrapped in an intense garnet- red cloak.’ Crozes Hermitage lords over Northern Rhone as its biggest appellation with 1650 hectares of vineyard rooted in granite and clay soils that helpfully absorb water and keep the vines cool, giving the fruit enough time to attain the balance that Crozes Hermitage Syrah, the phenomenon it is.
Two Hands Gnarly Dudes Shiraz 2020
The Aussies didn’t start off, trying to make a certain red wine grape, their most ambitious vinous pursuit that involved fashioning a groundbreaking new world style and rechristening the fruit as Shiraz. It just turned out that way and no one’s grumpy about it, save a few vignerons in the Rhone. Australia owns the Shiraz, not just with regard to naming rights but also a bold, ripe style that doesn’t apologise for muscular tannins and pushes the alcohol level to the limit. And it all comes together in the Barossa Valley in South Australia. Shiraz is Barossa and vice versa. This region has single handedly since its beginnings in the mid 19 century evolved a big bold style with a stunning balance that holds the elements together. Red and black clay soils that carpet the vast region soak in ample sun that ripens the fruit while the contrastingly cool nights give the vines crucial pause.
Soils of black and red clays with siliceous sands enable the vines to nurture fruit of sublime balance and concentration. And that’s what happens on the prized vineyard parcels of the Two Hands Wines estate in Marananga where the Two Hands Gnarly Dudes Shiraz 2020 gets made. The wine is an ode to the cult 1998 dark comedy The Big Lebowski and the tough old vines that sit on the clay soils. This classic Barossa Shiraz abounds with rich flavours of raspberry and plum, mingling with black pepper, leading to fleshy tannins and impressive length. This dude nails the Aussie Shiraz style.