Magazine article The Spectator

Spectator Mini-Bar Offer

Magazine article The Spectator

Spectator Mini-Bar Offer

Article excerpt

Goodness, Rhône wines are popular these days, and it's easy to see why. Rich, full, spicy and velvety, they have a warmth and generosity that some allegedly greater wine regions lack. I'm sure you'll want to snap up this tremendous selection of Rhône (and near Rhône) wines from Graham Mitchell, a sprig of the famous El Vino Mitchell family.

The region is, of course, best known for its reds, but I loved the white Laurus Côtes du Rhône 2002(1), which is made half from the Roussanne grape and half from the very fashionable Viognier. It's a very elegant wine with a lovely golden colour, and it brings the savour of nuts and fruit and toast and oak. The two grape varieties are fermented separately, with part of the Roussanne being kept 'sur lie', or on the dregs, which sounds nasty but adds liberally to the flavour. This will keep a few years, but there's no reason why you shouldn't glug it back now.

Now the reds. Gabriel Meffre, who makes Laurus, also makes this splendid Côtes du Rhône 2000(2) It is just over half Grenache and just under half Syrah, producing that concentrated, heady, perfumed flavour which marks a top-class Rhône. …

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