MORE CORNAS (CHEVAL MASCOT) NEWS: the mighty CORNAS returned to Paris in April, the swanky so and so, this time frequenting the classy Western reaches of the city, at AUTEUIL. He contested the Prix Quo Vadis (the French race names have more ring to them, n’est ce pas?), a steeplechase over 3,700 metres against 11 rivals. Cornas led into the home straight, after making the running, and finished an honourable fourth, backed in from 17/1 to 10/1 as French Turfistes appreciate the qualities of the horse they believe comes from the Ardèche and its Noble Wine Village. Connoisseurs, they all are, down at the PMU. ALLEZ CORNAS!
ENTERED RECENTLY: the main focus is on 2011 GIGONDAS REDS – the report is under 2011 SOUTHERN RHÔNE. If buying, I would go for the easy drinkability of some, and tackle them early in their life. Or I would cellar a select few that can develop over time, and give interest and satisfaction past the 10-year mark.
A lot of Notes on 2011 CÔTES DU RHÔNE and VILLAGES have been entered, so a whole range of CO-OPERATIVES and smaller DOMAINES has been added. Here we go: under CÔTES DU RHÔNE: the vast CELLIER DES DAUPHINS at Tulette, LE DEVÈS, the Languedoc-based VIGNOBLES FONCALIEU, the wide range, with some promise, offered by LES VINS PIERRE ROUGON, LA SUZIENNE at SUZE-LA-ROUSSE, TERRES D’AVIGNON, VIGNERONS DE VILLEDIEU-BUISSON.
At CAIRANNE, DOMAINE DE LA GAYÈRE. At GIGONDAS, the good new Merchant business MAISON UGHETTO-AUDOIN. At PLAN DE DIEU, the hearty DOMAINE LE GRAND RETOUR. At SÉGURET, MAISON PLANTEVIN, DOMAINE EYGUESTRE. At SIGNARGUES, DOMAINE MAGALANNE. At VALRÉAS, DOMAINE DES GRANDS DEVERS.
Early May sees the DECANTER WORLD WINE AWARDS, so there is a lot of tasting to be done in search of quality for that. Perhaps May will bring more sustained heat and growing weather for the vineyards, and for those wanting to drink coolly and outdoors. SANTÉ!