The 2015 Gigondas Cuvee Louisiane comes from a site located just beside the domaine, which is a mix of clay and sandy soils. Aged all in foudre, it boasts terrific notes of framboise, spring flowers, black raspberries and orange blossom (which I normally find more in the Les Souteyrades release). This full-bodied, deep, layered 2015 has a big mid-palate, is impeccably balanced and shows the purity and finesse that’s common in the vintage.
My pick of the cuvées in 2015 is the 2015 Gigondas La Louisiane, a blend of 80% Grenache, 15% Mourvèdre and the rest Cinsault and Syrah. From south-facing slopes of red clay and sand, this shows incredible detail in its aromas of garrigue and raspberries, then folds in richer notes of dark chocolate. This is full-bodied and velvety in feel, with just a hint of warmth on the finish. It should drink well for a decade, possibly longer. At Domaine Saint Damien, there are four Gigondas cuvées, although the Clovis Saurel isn't bottled every year. It's a small, family domaine with the magnificently mustachioed Joël Saurel at the helm, although son Romain is increasingly confident in the winery. This is a reference point for traditional Gigondas, but the family also owns a small portion of Côtes du Rhône Villages Plan de Dieu. We finished up with a handful of older wines, which I noted for readers who may have cellared them.(JC)
Opaque ruby. Sexy, highly perfumed aromas of candied red and dark berries, incense and smoky minerals, joined by a slowly emerging floral note. Juicy, broad and energetic on the palate, offering intense raspberry, cherry and spicecake flavors and a suggestion of candied flowers. Finishes sweet, lively and youthfully tannic, delivering superb, spice- and mineral-driven persistence.(JR)
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