2010 Domaine de Fondrèche "Persia" Côtes du Ventoux (Previously $30)
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
The 2010 Cotes du Ventoux Persia, a blend of 90% Syrah (from 50-year-old vines) and 10% Mourvedre from the estate's finest terroir, is aged in small barrels and 600-liter demi-muids, with at least one year of aging on its lees. Abundant notes of blackberries and cassis interwoven with hints of espresso roast, white chocolate and acacia flowers are found in this tightly knit, full-bodied, impressive 2010. Tasting like a top-flight northern Rhone Hermitage rather than a wine from the Cotes du Ventoux, it will benefit from 2-3 years of cellaring and should keep for 15 years thereafter.
Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar
(made from 90% old-vines syrah and 10% mourvedre): Opaque ruby. Pungent, spice-accented aromas of dark berries, cherry pit, olive and violet, with a smoky topnote. Chewy, palate-staining blackcurrant and bitter cherry flavors gain sweetness with air and pick up a subtle licorice quality. Clings well on the finish, with the licorice and dark berry notes repeating.
90% Syrah, 10% Mourvèdre. Spice and pepper and old leather handbags on the nose. Nervy. Just a trace of oak here for the moment but this should eventually be a great bottle.
A dark, slightly rustic version for Ventoux, with strong singed alder and tobacco notes, followed by mulled currant and plum fruit. A lightly firm, woodsy edge hangs on the finish. (Web Only- 2012)
"Nearly every shrewd wine consumer is aware of the remarkable wines that emanate from this high-quality, biodynamically run estate in the Ventoux," writes Robert Parker. "A long-standing point of reference for what is possible from this outlying appellation east of the Cotes du Rhone villages and Chateauneuf du Pape, etc., this operation has been run with great precision and passion by proprietors Sebastien Vincenti and Nanou Barthelemy. The natural, pure, uncomplicated, fresh, lively wines they produce are a message to everyone trying to produce something special from relatively obscure areas. Fondreche certainly has an impressive track record of making wines that consumers adore. However, these wines do have limited aging potential. In the case of their top reds, for example, they keep about 4-5 years, possibly longer, but they are so good young, who cares about aging? The white wines are generally fermented in barrel, then moved to tank and bottled early for their freshness and delightful fruit." (10/2012) 14.5% abv.