Stop me if you’ve heard this story… long-time grower and small family producer taken over by a new generation who brings modern education and tools to bring out the best in the family property. So… this is one of those stories… except for one really interesting tidbit. A new generation can certainly make a huge difference with new techniques, cleaner production, more astute work in the vineyard… but the one thing they cannot do is change the terroir of the vines.
In this case, we have young Maxime Gourdain, recently taking over from his uncle, Louis Drevon, and bringing the vineyard and winery up to a new level. The magic is the vineyard that makes up the bulk of this wine – Rozier. An importer of another wine from this vineyard calls Rozier, “The vineyard that Guigal wishes he owned!” That’s because the Rozier vineyard lies in the heart of the Cote Brune, just above the famed La Landonne vineyard – the vineyard that Guigals has used to produce NINE 100 pt rated wines!
This baby is 98% Syrah, with the region’s typical small dose of Viognier adding a little aromatic lift and sexiness! 25% new oak adds some spice and structure, without overwhelming the luscious fruit. This is a young wine – it’s very tight and compact – yet there is a lot of lush, dark, smoky fruit already coming to the fore. Blueberries, raspberries and violets along with Cote Rotie’s signature hint – bacon! Seriously! Very polished and refined this baby is drinking great right now, but has the stuffing to go for another 5-7 years.
Incredible terroir, rejuvenated with meticulous vineyard management, coupled with attentive and careful winemaking… Talk about finding a hidden gem!