Hello friends. There is incredible value to be found in the satellite appellations around the Rhone Valley. We’ve dabbled over the years in the Ventoux (Lou Ven Tou), Grignan-les-Adhemar (Rozets), and Luberon (Val Joanis). Today we add Costieres de Nimes to the list:
If you imagine a triangle formed by the Rhone Valley to the north, the Languedoc to the southwest, and Provence to the southeast, CdN is smack in the middle of that triangle (here’s a map relating it to the remainder of the Rhone). It’s an ancient winegrowing region (archeological evidence shows that wine has been made here for more than two millennia). Stylistically, the wines resemble the Rhone with a dash of Mediterranean soul, and price-wise, they resemble Languedoc and Provence. Perfect.
Teulon is among the families with the deepest roots in this part of the world. The Chateau was established in 1696, and the family is now on its 7th winemaking generation (Phillipe Teulon, pictured here). He recently (2012) moved the estate entirely to organic farming.
I should also mention that Teulon wines come to us courtesy of William at Seattle-based Chloe Imports. We’ve worked with several of William’s Burgundy producers, and of course his wonderful Champagne house Copinet on multiple occasions. This is our first foray into his Rhone roster, and I came away deeply impressed.
This is a 60/30/10 blend of Syrah, Grenache, and Mourvedre, grown on the brownstone rocky alluviums of the Rhone delta (as you can see on the map, we’re quite close to the Mediterranean here), aged in a mix of concrete and neutral barrels. It offers a pure nose of raspberry and strawberry fruit, tarragon, mineral, and cracked pepper. In the mouth, this is a total glugger, with freshness and charm to spare. There’s a beautiful floral character here, a really attractive inner-mouth perfume that complements the fruit and mineral tones beautifully. The finish is leafy and delicious, the overall package balanced, crepuscular, and, for me, evocative of autumn. Those looking for a fall house wine to open on Tuesday nights should pay careful attention here.
First come first served up to 60 bottles, and the wine should arrive in a week or two, at which point it will be ready for pickup or shipping during the next temperature-appropriate shipping window.