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From Grenache - with a bit of Syrah and Carignan acquired via a rental agreement in order to permit classification as A.O.C. - the Cabirau 2009 Cotes du Roussillon Malgre les Functionnaires ("Despite the Bureaucrats") delivers sweetly-ripe scents and juicily-generous flavors of grenadine and black raspberry, with nips of white pepper and pleasantly astringent impressions of berry seed serving for invigoration in a palate-staining finish that preserves a distinctive sense of crushed stone and peat underpinnings. Firm and bright as it is, this outstanding value is likely to open up with another year or two in bottle, just as it did in the glass after opening.
Importer-proprietor Dan Kravitz has scored renewed success with his latest Domaine Cabirau releases, vinified and raised in tank under the auspices of Nicolas Burger at the (now joint) Tautavel-Vingrau coop of which he is also a member.
90 Points - Wine Advocate
Sale Price: $14.99
Varietal: Syrah or Shiraz
Depending on where it's grown and how it's made, the variety has two names. In France, where it goes by Syrah, it makes a huge contribution to the red wines of the Rhone Valley. In the southern Rhone villages of Chateauneuf-du-Pape, Gigondas, and Vacqueyras it is blended with a number of varieties but mainly Grenache. It is in the northern Rhone, including Hermitage, Crozes-Hermitage,Côte-Rôtie, St. Joseph, where it most often stands out on its own, and is only occasionally blended with the region's white grapes. More recently, in the late 20th Century, Shiraz has put Australian producers such as Penfolds and d’Arenberg on the fine wine map, with cult wines like "Grange" and "The Dead Arm". Generally speaking, the style from the old world is more savoury, expressing aromas of pepper, cured meat and leather. The hotter climate experienced in Australia results in more upfront, dense and even jammy fruit. The grape has also taken off with rapid success in California and Washington, as well as South Africa and New Zealand. Producers in these regions often name their varietal wines according to the style they intend.
A country viewed by many as the home of fine wine, it is almost unique in terms of how embedded food and wine is in the nations culture. Given the diverse geography, with so much of the country providing the climate and soil suitable for viticulture, it is no surprise that its produces such an extensive and varied selection of wines. It is the country from where the vast majority of the New World's most popular "international" grapes and stylistic influences originate. While there might seem to be an alarming disparity between the most sought after wines (were a case might set you back as much as a deposit on a small house) and the millions of gallons of vin de table filling up the European wine lake every year, there is so much great value to be found between the two extremes. Bordeaux, Burgundy, Champagne, and the Rhone may still dominate the market for fine wine, but regions including the Loire, Alsace, Languedoc & Roussillon and the South West are increasingly becoming excellent sources of good quality, affordable wines.
Region: Languedoc and Roussillon
The Languedoc and Roussillon are two adjoining but distinctly separate wine regions in southern France. The Languedoc consists of two main regions: The Aude, home to the sub-regions of Limoux, Corbieres, Fitou, Minervois, and the Herault, which includes Picpoul de Pinet and the vin doux naturels producing regions of Banyuls, Frontignan, Lunel and Mireval.
Red wine is wine made from dark-coloured grape varieties. The color of red differs based on the grapes variety or varieties used.
Interestingly, black grapes yield a juice that is greenish-white. The actual red color comes from anthocyan pigments (also called anthocyanins) from the skin of the grape (exceptions are the relatively uncommon teinturier varieties, which produce a red colored juice). Most of the production centers around the extraction of color and flavor from the grape skin.