Domaine d’ Andezon Cotes du Rhone 2004
It’s autumn in the Northern Hemisphere and that means it’s time to start transitioning from the heat of summer to the cold of winter. Oh, and from the light, crisp, cold white wines to the heavier bodied, warm red wines — to match the richer, warmer dishes and “comfort foods” people tend to enjoy more as the weather gets chilly. One wine that seems to go hand in hand with the fall season is Cotes du Rhone, a hearty red wine from the southern Rhone region of France.
Cotes-du-Rhone (COAT- duh – RONE) — or “CDR” for short — is found under many brand names, and usually a blend dominated by the grapes Syrah and Grenache (although several other grapes can be contained, including but not limited to Mourvedre, Cinsault, and Carignane). The grapes can be harvested from all over the Rhone region, though most come from the southern part of the region. Many wineries make both a red version and a white version (the white usually includes Viognier, Marsanne, Roussanne, and/or Grenache Blanc), but the reds are much more popular in the States.
It used to be that CDRs were heavy, fairly tannic wines that would match well only with high-protein foods. However, the Cotes-du-Rhones on the shelf today are for the most part more lively, fruity, and fun compared to their ancestors. You may hear some Frenchmen refer to CDR as a “bistro wine”, because it will go with a number of simple dishes you might find on the menu of a French bistro — such as hamburger, mac and cheese, meat pies, stews, braises, roast chicken, etc.
This particular bottle is from Domaine d’Andezon, which is a 25-acre estate in the village of Estezargues, situated on the southwestern edge of the Rhone Valley delta. Included in the vineyards are low-yielding Syrah vines that are up to 100 years old (that’s a big deal; old vines mean longer roots, which many people think deliver more complexity to the fruit).
Fresh, bright, ripe red berry flavors dominate the nose and palate, along with some black berry, earth, and pepper. Red raspberry, black raspberry, black cherry, a touch of red licorice are some of the flavors I get. Very clean, with a smooth texture. Acidity and tannins are equal, and somewhere between mild and medium intensity. This wine is rich and mouthfilling enough to be very appealing on its own, and is even better with food.
Drink this with burgers, stews, shepherdâ€™s pie, pot roast, and similar â€œbistroâ€ dishes.
A solid wine, a good choice as an everyday red for the dinner table. At less than ten bucks, a good value.
a-7 t-7 b-8 fc-8 v-8 ~ 88 Points
Importer: Eric Solomon Selections / European Wine Cellars
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