Robert Parker 90
In total contrast, the 2009 Cotes du Rhone Coudoulet red represents the essence of Provence in its notes of ground pepper, new saddle leather, lavender, kirsch, garrigue, and abundant red and black fruits. This complex, evolved, luscious red begs for a bloody grilled steak. With a creamy, medium to full-bodied texture, this gorgeous, complex, evolved wine should be enjoyed over the next 7-8 years. Brothers Jean-Pierre and Francois Perrin as well as their four sons, Thomas, Marc, Pierre and Mathieu, have quickly become the dominate wine producers of the entire southern Rhone Valley. They have expanded their operation even further by partnering with the Jaboulets. Now having over 1,200 acres in vine and extensive contracts, this is a high quality locomotive, great news for consumers seeking a range of top quality red and white wines in all price ranges. The Perrins’ greatest success is undeniably their enormous quantities of high quality, inexpensive wines called La Vieille Ferme, a white from the Cotes du Luberon and a red from the Cotes du Ventoux. The Perrins are now the top producers of wines from the cool climate southern Rhone appellation of Vinsobres, located in the northern sector of the region and meaning â€œsober wine.â€ In 2008, the Perrins purchased one of the better estates in Gigondas, Clos des Tourelles, a 25 acre property located at the southern end of the village from which they make two cuvees. True stars in the Perrin portfolio are the white and red Cotes du Rhone from their estate called Coudoulet which is adjacent to the appellation of Chateauneuf du Pape. As longtime readers know, Chateau de Beaucastel makes two of the great white wines of the southern Rhone, although in Chateauneuf du Pape the rather dramatic amelioration of quality that has taken place with white winemaking has given them more competition than they had a decade ago. Importer: Vineyard Brands, Birmingham, AL; tel. (205) 980-8802
Anticipated maturity: 2011-2019
(30% each grenache and mourvedre and 20% each syrah and cinsault): Full ruby. Intense, smoke- and spice-accented aromas of dark berries and cherry, along with powerful licorice and floral qualities. Broad, deeply pitched blackberry and cherry compote flavors stain the palate, showing surprising vivacity. Finishes with slow-mounting tannins and impressive persistence, leaving a licorice note behind.