Delas Frères Crozes Hermitage ‘Le Clos’
December 20, 2018, Jeb Dunnuck
“Also from alluvial soils, the 2017 Crozes Hermitage Le Clos will spent upward of 14 months in 1- to 3-year-old barrels. It has loads of black and blue fruits, earth, and gravelly notes, medium to full body, a rounded, supple, polished texture, and outstanding length. It's another first-rate wine from this team.”
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"cuvée is a vineyard plot selection. The grapes come exclusively from "Le Clos" vineyard on the choice plain area known as "Le 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. 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.
This cuvée has a deep ruby red color, with garnet tinges. The nose shows aromas of stewed black fruit dominated by 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
Suggested Retail Price: $59.00