2012 Domaine Le Couroulu Vacqueyras Vieilles Vignes

SKU #1269705 91-93 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 Even more impressive, the 2012 Vacqueyras Vieilles Vignes is an inky colored blend of 70% Grenache and 30% Syrah that also was aged completely in concrete tank. Loaded with mineral-laced blackberry fruit, earth, wild herbs and roasted meat-like aromas and flavors, it hits the palate with medium to full-bodied richness and depth, bright acidity and stunning purity of fruit. More than a little impressive, it’s an age-worthy 2012 that should benefit from a year or two in bottle and have over a decade of longevity. Don’t miss it! These two smoking Vacqueyras stood out in my tastings and this estate needs to be on every reader’s radar! (JD)  (12/2013)

91 points Wine Spectator

 Delicious, with energetic bitter plum, currant and boysenberry coulis flavors that race along, with mouthwatering black tea and singed mesquite notes. A pleasant iron hint underscores the finish, giving the fruit extra time to play out. Drink now through 2017. 125 cases imported. (JM)  (10/2015)

90 points Vinous

 Opaque ruby. Vibrant cherry and blueberry scents, with a strong floral accent and building spiciness. Sweet black and blue fruit flavors show good vibrancy and clarity, with a hint of licorice emerging on the back half. Finishes chewy and spicy, with dusty tannins and an echo of juicy dark berries. (JR)  (5/2015)

K&L Notes

Importer Notes: Domaine Le Couroulu, founded in 1928 and still owned by the Ricard family, is known for producing some of the most full-bodied Vacqueyras and other wines from their 20 hectares of old Grenache and Syrah vines. The estate is named for the Curlew bird, which is known in Provencal dialect as Couroulu: this bird is the signature emblem on the domaine’s labels. Only roughly 700 cases per year are produced which come from two parcels of Grenache planted by Guy’s grandfather in 1932 and a smaller plot of Syrah planted in 1960. These old vines have extremely low yields, giving the wine its exceptional concentration.

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By: Alex Schroeder | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 8/15/2016 | Send Email
I was thrilled to taste this small production Vacqueyras out of the South Rhône. Domaine Couroulu (Provençal for curlew) only produces about 700 cases of their Vieilles Vignes line, mostly because the old vines they use don’t really produce much fruit. The fruit they do produce is of exceptional quality, however! 60% Grenache, 40% Syrah, it definitely displays the rich dark Grenache fruit flavors like blackberry and blueberry, but with soft leather undertones and well integrated tannins for an overall amazing structure! This is quite the Rhône-lovers treat, and a great value for the appellation!

By: Jacques Moreira | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 8/10/2016 | Send Email
This wine is a picture perfect Vacqueyras, full of spice notes, blueberry, and earth on the nose. The spices followed handily on the palate along with notes of graphite and roasted meat. It is not a heavy wine, and the acidity gives it a very nice lift along with its quite present tannins. It would pair perfectly with spicy sausages, Andouillete, Chilis or any spicy meat dishes. An easy choice for those wanting to discover the wines of southern France.

By: Alex Pross | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 8/10/2016 | Send Email
This sexy, full-bodied red is hard to resist! Loaded with dark chocolate, black fig and exotic spice notes this seamless wine has layers of dark fruit along with supple tannins. Rich and harmonious this heady red should pair marvelously well with rich red meats as well as Cassoulet.
Top Value! Drink from 2016 to 2020

By: Keith Mabry | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 8/10/2016 | Send Email
Vacqueyras is the area just below Gigondas and the warmth and ripeness of the region really shine through in the Couroulu. The Vieilles Vignes shows gorgeous notes of blackberry preserves, blueberry coulis, roasted tobacco, toasted peppercorns and graphite minerality. It is such an engaging wine with its medium-full body never coming off as heavy with bright acidity and polished tannins. This wine will keep well in the short term but I love it right now with some roasted leg of lamb with toasted Moroccan spices and grilled veggies.

By: John Majeski | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 8/10/2016 | Send Email
The colorful village of Vacqueyras lies about a mile from its more famous neighbor Gigondas, but invariably produces wines that rival in their deep fragrant aromas, suppleness of body and mouthwatering texture. Domaine le Couroulu, named for the Eurasian Sandpiper that adorns its label, has consistently turned out stunning vintages. Crafted from 60 to 90 year old Grenache Noir and Syrah vines, this madder-tinted beauty is a robust array of lavish plum, blackberry and dark cherry fruits, ballasted by generous spice, oolong tea and garrigue on the memorable finish. Highly recommended!
Top Value!

Additional Information:

Varietal:

Rhone Blends

Country:

France

- When it comes to wine, France stands alone. No other country can beat it in terms of quality and diversity. And while many of its Region, Bordeaux, Burgundy and Champagne most obviously, produce wine as rare, as sought-after and nearly as expensive as gold, there are just as many obscurities and values to be had from little known appellations throughout the country. To learn everything there is to know about French wine would take a lifetime. To understand and appreciate French wine, one only has to begin tasting them. Click for a list of bestselling items from all of France.
Sub-Region:

Rhone

- Legendary wine-producing region in southeast France. Stereotypically speaking, Rhone wines are high in alcohol, and the majority produced is red. The northern Rhone is best known for outstanding 100% Syrah wines from areas such as Cote Rotie and Hermitage, as well as for fabulous white wines from Condrieu (where Viognier is king). In the southern Rhone, look for spicy, full-bodied wines that are blends of Grenache, Syrah, and other varietals coming from appellations such as Chateauneuf du Pape, Gigondas, or Rasteau. Wines labeled as Cote du Rhone or Cotes du Rhone Village (a cut above generic Cotes du Rhone) are frequently found here in the US because they often represent some of the best values on the market. View our bestselling Rhone Valley wines.