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French and Greek Côte-Rôtie side by side

I was looking forward to this comparison for a few months now. A bottle of 2005 Côte-Rôtie Brune et Blonde by Guigal was lying in my cellar for longer. A few months ago, as I discovered a Greek wine shop in Frankfurt, I stumbled upon this other bottle, a 2007 Syrah named Evangelo by Domaine Gerovassiliou. The shop owner explained that this wine is supposed to represent a Greek kind of Côte Rôtie, as it is made exactly with the same methods and even uses 8% ( double the amount compared to the Guigal!) of the white grape Viognier within the wine – a common thing in the Northern Rhône to stabilize color, add acidity and flavor to the wine. And as both wines even are in the same high price class (around 40 Euro), I thought this could only be an interesting showdown. Read the rest of this entry »

All-Rhône Reds Blind-Tasting

Last thursday we were about 10 wine-buddies gathering at our generous host Nick‘s home for a blind-tasting of red Rhône wines. This time there were absolutely no limits as all reds from all-over the Rhône-region were permitted, drastically differentiating it from our last tasting at Nick’s when only Southern Rhône reds were allowed, as well as from the last blind tasting at my place where boundaries were set by the Syrah varietal, originally stemming from that area but now being planted all over Planet Wine.

This means that each of the 12 bottles we popped that night could be anything from Côte-Rôtie and Hermitage to Côtes du Ventoux and Châteauneuf-Du-Pape, hence also mixing single-varietal wines with those that represent cuvées. As you can see, with each blind-tasting we are slowly encircling what both Rhône and Syrah have to offer. Are we gonna grasp the essence of it tonight? Dream on, dreamer.. Read the rest of this entry »

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