Delas Freres Crozes Hermitage ‘Le Clos’
June 2018, Josh Raynolds
“Opaque ruby. Pungent, mineral- and spice-accented dark berry and cherry aromas take on floral and game overtones with aeration. Juicy, sweet and expansive in the mouth, offering intense boysenberry and cherry pie flavors along with slowly emerging smoky bacon and olive qualities. Fine-grained tannins frame a long, sweet finish that leaves a sappy blue fruit note behind.”
January 24, 2018, Jeb Dunnuck
“Lastly, the 2016 Crozes-Hermitage Le Clos comes mostly from a single parcel (the Les Saviots lieu-dit) of older vines. It offers terrific notes of cassis, black raspberries, toasted spice and dried flowers. With medium to full-bodied richness, terrific purity and ripe tannin, it’s one of the undeniable successes in the vintage.”
The Crozes-Hermitage vineyards are the largest of the northern Rhône appellations. Syrah is the main varietal grown, with Marsanne or Roussanne making up no more than 15 percent. The Crozes-Hermitage “Le Clos” cuvee is a vineyard plot selection. The grapes come exclusively from the “Clos” vineyard on the choice plain area known as Chassis on the left bank of the Rhône. This wine is only made in the very best years and its production is deliberately limited to 7,000 bottles (750 ml) per year.
The soil varies from granite subsoils in the North to both fluvial-glacial alluviums and terraces of rolled river bed stones, mixed with loess in the South. The climate has a southerly exposure in the hillside areas. The “Mistral” is the dominant wind. “Le Clos” grapes are harvested manually at optimum maturity. Fermentation is carried out in the traditional way in open-topped concrete tanks, following a two-day period of skin contact at low temperature. Fermentation follows at controlled temperatures
from 82°F to 86°F (28°C to 30°C). Daily cap pushing down and pumping over is kept up for about 10 days, with a total maceration period up to 20 days. Maturation lasts for 14 to 16 months in oak barrels, which have already held wine for one to three years. These are regularly racked in order to provide the necessary oxygen to the tannins for an optimum maturing.
The Crozes-Hermitage “Le Clos” cuvée has a deep ruby red color, with garnet tinges. The nose shows aromas of stewed black fruit (cassis and blackberries). As it opens up, it reveals hints of leather and game. The palate is perfectly balanced, with a combination of suave delicacy and considerable volume. The finish is lifted by flavors of very ripe black cherries.
This wine pairs well with waterfowl, mixed grills and marinated beef or chicken.
Varietals: 100% Syrah
Wine Alcohol: 12.5%
Suggested Retail Price: $59.00