2012 Saint Cosme Côtes du Rhône
Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar
(100% syrah): Opaque ruby. Pungent aromas of dark berry preserves, olive, violet and cola. Very syrah, showing an expansive character on the palate, with pliant blackberry and cassis flavors gaining sweetness with air. Closes smoky and long, with firming tannins building slowly. An excellent value and a wine that will actually reward a few years of cellaring.
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
A step up, the 2012 Cotes du Rhone is almost all Syrah that comes from higher elevation vineyards in Vinsobres and the Gard region (western side of the Rhone River). Offering big, bright berry fruits, pepper, olive and hints of meatiness, it is a medium-bodied, elegant and rock-solid Cotes du Rhone that has loads of character. It’s a serious value to drink over the coming 4-5 years.
A solid, gutsy version, with notes of plum paste and black currant preserves studded with hints licorice and singed vanilla. Briar and tobacco details check in on the finish, which shows pleasant grip.
Wine Advocate's Jeb Dunnuck writes: "Without a doubt, the leading estate in Gigondas is Louis Barruol’s Chateau Saint-Cosme. Located just outside the village, he releases an assortment of world class Gigondas, as well as a number of value priced, negotiate-styled Cotes du Rhone efforts that always deliver high-quality (these are normally released under his Saint-Cosme label and do not say Chateau Saint-Cosme). Both 2011 and 2012 are incredibly strong here and readers should not miss these wines! The three single vineyard releases are basically 100% Grenache, from unique terroirs, that are brought up all in Burgundy barrels, 30% being new, 40% 1-year-old and the balance 2-3-year old." (12/2013) Notes from winemaker & vigneron Louis Barruol: "Two sources have composed this wine for many years now: I am impressed by the way they are consistant in quality whatever the vintage is. Vinsobres brings the freshness, the complexity, the strenght and the relief. The "villafranchiennes terraces" from the Gard area (huge terraces of rolling stones) generate the colour, the power, the generosity of a southern syrah. These two go so well together, are so complementary, that I will not change this recipe...In 2012, our wines from Vinsobres are exceptionnal. Harvesting late allowed us to vinify great wines: they will be the base of our 2012. Redcurrant, blackcurrant, liquorish, violet. Syrah. Destemmed harvest. Limestony sands, red clay, rolling stones. Aged in vat." 14.5% abv.