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Massive Press and Full-Throated Praise for Courbis Spectacular 2015s - 02/06/2018 - Rhone Valley

The 2015 vintage gave producers in the Northern Rhône the raw materials to produce breathtaking wines, which is precisely what the Courbis brothers manage to accomplish. Their more than impressive set of 2015s left the critics awestruck, with Jeb Dunnuck being particularly enamored, calling them the “finest” ever from this highly regarded estate. Even with all the hype, the prices for these blockbusters remain surprisingly grounded. It’s not often that you can find a 100-point bottling for under $100 making the "Les Eygats" a super special find that collectors won’t want to miss. But the 100 pointer is only part of the story here, as across the portfolio these are inspiring wines that will delight both collector and novice alike. The 2015s are notable for their ability to combine with power and elegance, which these wines artfully. Across the portfolio, the wines are deeply fruited, but also have a high-toned character that keeps from fresh and lively from the first sip to the last. While the 2015s will offer great early drinking, they are also excellent candidates to cellar for another ten to thirty years. There’s an abundance are great 2015s to choose from but for our money, Courbis is one producer you won’t want to miss. The pre-arrival pricing here is highly competitive making this an excellent opportunity to lock in some truly historic wines.

Vintage Item Name Score Retail Link
2015 Domaine Courbis St. Joseph Rouge (Pre-Arrival) 93 $39.99 View
2015 Domaine Courbis "Champelrose" Cornas (Pre-Arrival) 94 $44.99 View
2015 Domaine Courbis St. Joseph "Les Royes" (Pre-Arrival) 96 $49.99 View
2015 Domaine Courbis St. Joseph "La Cote Sud" (Pre-Arrival) 95 $54.99 View
2015 Domaine Courbis "La Sabarotte" Cornas (Pre-Arrival) 98 $84.99 View
2015 Domaine Courbis "Les Eygats" Cornas (Pre-Arrival) 100 $99.99 View


2015 Domaine Courbis St. Joseph Rouge (Pre-Arrival) ($39.99)

93 points Jeb Dunnuck: "Moving to the current releases from bottle and starting with the classic 2015 Saint Joseph, this beauty is ripe and polished, and shows the sweet tannin and charm of the vintage. Blackcurrants, black raspberries, spice and hints of graphite all flow to a medium to full-bodied, polished, incredibly elegant red that's already hard to resist, yet should keep for 7-8 years." (01/2018)

90-92 points Vinous: "(raised in barriques that range from three to six years of age) Bright purple. Intense berry and lavender aromas are sharpened by a smoky mineral quality and a hint of white pepper. Seamless, focused and gently sweet on the palate, offering intense dark fruit liqueur and floral pastille flavors that become spicier on the back half. Finishes smooth and very long, with an echo of candied flowers and supple tannins adding shape. (JR)" (04/2017)

91 points Wine Spectator: "Ripe and mouthfilling, with a good brambly edge juxtaposed against sleeker cassis and crushed plum fruit flavors that race through. Shows a graphite underpinning on the finish. Drink now through 2022. (JM)" (08/2017)

2015 Domaine Courbis "Champelrose" Cornas (Pre-Arrival) ($44.99)

94 points Jeb Dunnuck: "Moving to the Cornas releases, 2015 is an incredible vintage for this estate. Their 2015 Cornas Champelrose comes from slightly younger vines and was destemmed and brought up primarily in neutral barrels. It's a beautiful, elegant, charming Cornas (not something you say very often) that offers terrific notes of black raspberries, currants, incense, spice and violets. Its tannins are sweet, it's already delicious, yet it should evolve nicely for 10-15 years." (01/2018)

92-94 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "Sexy, rounded and voluptuous, the roughly 1,500-case 2015 Cornas Champelrose is the entry-level cuvée thats all destemmed and aged in 25% new barrels. It's easily the most approachable in this lineup and has gorgeous notes of cured meats, toasted spice, black raspberries, black cherries and licorice. Full-bodied, layered and rounded, it should drink beautifully on release, but evolve gracefully. (JD)" (12/2016)

94 points Wine Spectator: "This sports some seriously delicious plum, blackberry and boysenberry fruit flavors, inlaid with ample brambly grip and backed by lively anise and tar accents on the finish. Vivacious. Best from 2019 through 2029. (JM)" (05/2017)

92 points Vinous: "Opaque ruby. Mineral-accented blackberry, cherry compote and violet on the highly perfumed nose. Shows very good depth as well as energy on the palate, offering sweet boysenberry, cherry and candied violet flavors complemented by smoky bacon and black pepper nuances. Closes smoky and very long, displaying repeating mineral and floral qualities and gentle tannic grip. (JR)" (04/2018)

2015 Domaine Courbis St. Joseph "Les Royes" (Pre-Arrival) ($49.99)

96 points Jeb Dunnuck: "The 2015 Saint Joseph Les Royes offers a similar, if not slightly darker purple color to go with additional minerality, tons of cassis, graphite and charcoal aromatics, building tannin, and a great, great finish. Like a lot of 2015s, it's charming and approachable today, yet has the tannin and concentration to cruise in the cellar. This cuvée comes from a six-hectare, full south-facing vineyard in the southern part of the appellation, and was brought up in a mix of smaller barrels.The Courbis brothers have hit a home run with these 2015s, the finest wines Ive tasted from this brilliant estate. All three of the single vineyard Cornas are incredible wines, with the Les Eygats being one of finest Cornas ever made. The 2016s are also terrific wines that arent far behind the 2015s, and theyll be approachable at an earlier age as well." (01/2018)

91-93 points Vinous: "Opaque ruby. Ripe dark berries, cherry liqueur, olive and pipe tobacco on the highly perfumed nose; a smoky element adds vivacity. Energetic blackberry, bitter cherry and violet pastille flavors show excellent clarity and a hint of licorice that builds with air. The smooth, smoke-tinged finish emphatically repeats the floral and licorice notes, and supple tannins build steadily while folding into the intense dark fruit. (JR)" (04/2017)

92 points Wine Spectator: "Ripe, fleshy and focused, with delicious warm plum sauce and blackberry confiture flavors coursing over graphite, anise and Christmas pudding notes. A fruit-dominant style. Drink now through 2021." (01/2018)

92 points Decanter: "The grapes for this wine come from a rare outcrop of chalky soils in the southern part of the appellation. It has a bright, pure expression of classic St-Joseph, with dark berry fruit. It's very well balanced with good acidity and ripe tannin - a pure, polished and glossy style that's well executed. 25% new oak. (MW)" (10/2017)

2015 Domaine Courbis St. Joseph "La Cote Sud" (Pre-Arrival) ($54.99)

95 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "This is the first vintage for this wine, sourced from granitic, south-facing slopes. The 2015 Saint Joseph La Cote Sud is dense and nearly impenetrable. Hugely concentrated, with massive cassis fruit and waves of firm tannins, it will need a few years (or more) in the cellar to become approachable. After the dense, concentrated and tannic wines turned out by this domaine in 2015, it was a pleasure to taste through the charming, seductive 2016s. Proprietor Laurent Courbis describes them as very pleasant, in the style of 2012 and 2014. Aromatic, easy to drink. Not a vintage to hold a long time but to drink young. As youll see from the reviews, I think its actually a bit better than those years.(JC)" (12/2017)

94 points Jeb Dunnuck: "A new cuvée (or at least the first time I've tasted it), the 2015 Saint Joseph La Côte Sud offers a richer, riper style than the other Saint Joseph releases from Courbis. Blackcurrants, toasted spice, licorice and cured meat notes all flow to a concentrated, unctuous 2015 that has terrific fruit intensity and a great finish. The tannins are slightly more pronounced, but theres tons of sweet fruit and awesome purity, all contributing to a gorgeous Saint Joseph that's going to drink nicely for a decade or more.The Courbis brothers have hit a home run with these 2015s, the finest wines Ive tasted from this brilliant estate. All three of the single vineyard Cornas are incredible wines, with the Les Eygats being one of finest Cornas ever made. The 2016s are also terrific wines that arent far behind the 2015s, and theyll be approachable at an earlier age as well." (01/2018)

91-93 points Vinous: "Vivid purple. Mineral- and spice-accented aromas of ripe dark berries, licorice and violet on the nose. At once fleshy and energetic, offering juicy blackberry and bitter cherry flavors, and taking on a hint of smokiness and a touch of cola on the back half. Turns sweeter on the nicely persistent finish, which features supple tannins and lingering smoke and floral nuances.(JR)" (04/2017)

2015 Domaine Courbis "La Sabarotte" Cornas (Pre-Arrival) ($84.99)

98 points Jeb Dunnuck: "Deeper and richer than the Champelrose, the 2015 Cornas La Sabarotte comes from a great vineyard in the middle of the appellation and was raised in new barrels. Its huge nose of black raspberries, cassis, licorice, and violets give way to a full-bodied, incredibly seamless, gorgeously polished 2015 that's perfectly balanced, has sweet tannin, and a great, great finish. Give bottles a few years and enjoy over the following two decades.The Courbis brothers have hit a home run with these 2015s, the finest wines Ive tasted from this brilliant estate. All three of the single vineyard Cornas are incredible wines, with the Les Eygats being one of finest Cornas ever made. The 2016s are also terrific wines that arent far behind the 2015s, and theyll be approachable at an earlier age as well." (01/2018)

95-97 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The utterly profound 2015 Cornas La Sabarotte comes from a terrific lieu-dit located in the heart of the appellation and is brought up all in new French oak. Its deep purple/blue color is followed by incredible notes of black raspberries, blueberries, spring flowers, caramelized meats and licorice. Deep, full-bodied, utterly seamless and profound on the palate, with building, sweet tannin, it's a tour de force that will have two decades or more of longevity! (JD)" (12/2016)

94 points Vinous: "Vivid purple. An explosively perfumed bouquet evokes candied black/blue fruits, incense, vanilla and exotic spices and flowers. Plush, broad and alluringly sweet, offering palate-coating cherry, boysenberry and fruitcake flavors that are energized by smoky mineral and black pepper flourishes. Shows outstanding energy for its heft and betrays no rough edges. The blue fruit and floral notes resonate emphatically on the strikingly long finish, which is framed by smooth, harmonious tannins. (JR)" (04/2018)

93 points Wine Spectator: "Solidly ripe, with a fleshy core of currant preserves and plum compote, enlivened by notes of bay, sweet tapenade and singed mesquite. Shows some polish through the finish, revealing a mineral detail. Best from 2018 through 2024. (JM, Web only-2017)"

2015 Domaine Courbis "Les Eygats" Cornas (Pre-Arrival) ($99.99)

100 points Jeb Dunnuck: "Lastly, the inky colored (it's even deeper than the Sabarotte) 2015 Cornas Les Eygats comes from a cooler terroir located in the northern part of the appellation. Raised in equal parts new and used barrels, it offers an utterly profound bouquet of blackberries, blueberries, scorched earth, pepper and liquid flowers. Possessing sensational purity of fruit, integrated acidity, sweet tannin and perfect balance, it's another remarkably elegant yet powerful, heavenly Syrah from this estate that readers shouldn't miss. It's up with the finest Cornas ever made. Bravo!The Courbis brothers have hit a home run with these 2015s, the finest wines Ive tasted from this brilliant estate. All three of the single vineyard Cornas are incredible wines, with the Les Eygats being one of finest Cornas ever made." (01/2018)

95-97 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "Even inkier-colored than the Sabarotte, the 2015 Cornas les Eygats is another single vineyard release that comes from a site located on the northern edge of the appellation. Aged in 50% new French oak (the balance is in once-used barrels), it offers sensational notes of plums, blueberries, crushed violets, pen ink and barbecue smoke in an utterly profound, decadent, layered, heavenly profile. There's ample tannin here, but they're sweet and polished, and it has an awesome finish. Don't miss it! (JD)" (12/2016)

Jancis Robinson: "Loads of floral character and rich, succulent blackberry fruit. Fresh, perfumed, much more satisfying and complete than their Champelrose. Incredibly lengthy. Absolutely wonderful and broad stretches across the back palate. Superb. 17.5/20 points (RH)" (03/2017)