2003 A. Clape Cornas

SKU #1088205 94 points Wine Enthusiast

 Rich, creamy and lush, this is like no other Clape Cornas before or since. Jammy raspberry fruit coats the palate, yet without seeming simple or heavy because there's also a remarkable sense of minerality and balance. Long on the finish, buffered by soft tannins. As this ages, expect to see some of the jamminess recede and more of the minerality emerge. Drink 2010–2025, possibly longer. *Cellar Selection* (JC)  (9/2007)

93 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 On another level, the 2003 Cornas (which has a pH of 4.1) offers gorgeous fruit and full-bodied richness, with a still lively and fresh profile. Bloody meat, blackberry liqueur, licorice and gamey notes all emerge from this knockout Cornas, and it’s drinking beautifully now. I’d enjoy bottles over the coming 5-7 years, but it will certainly evolve for longer. (JD)  (8/2014)

93 points Wine Spectator

 This heat-marked vintage really sticks out in this flight, with juicy raspberry, blackberry and boysenberry fruit leaping to the fore. Open and lush, with hints of fig paste, graphite and dark olive adding just enough definition to the finish, where the core of raspberry ganache lingers. Probably won't go the distance of the others, but it's delicious. (JM, Web Only-2010)

92 points Vinous

 Dark ruby. Brooding dark cherry, tobacco and bitter chocolate on the nose. Then remarkably sweet and lush, with expansive red berry and candied licorice flavors that build and gain in sweetness with aeration. Long and bright on the finish, with a late note of rose pastille. (JR)  (1/2006)

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Price: $109.99
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- One of France's noblest black grape varieties, Syrah is known for its intense and distinctive perfume reminiscent of briar fruit, tar, spice and black pepper and its firm structure. One of few black grape varietals frequently vinified on its own, the best examples of Syrah come from the Northern Rhône, particularly Hermitage, but also Côte-Rôtie, Cornas, Crozes-Hermitage and St-Joseph. These wines are very astringent in their youth, though some Crozes-Hermitage and St-Joseph can be enjoyed young, relatively speaking. Given the requisite patience, though, these wines can reveal amazing complexity and secondary fruit characteristics like plum and blackcurrant as well as subtle hints of smoke and flowers. In the Southern Rhône, Syrah is used to add structure and complexity to wines dominated by Grenache and complemented by Mourvèdre, like the more immediately drinkable Côte du Rhônes, as well as the long-lived wines of Châteauneuf-du-Pape. In recent years, plantings of Syrah have spread throughout the Languedoc-Roussillon where it is produced on its own or blended with other varietals. Outside of France, the most important Syrah growing country is easily Australia, where it is called Shiraz. Quality levels here depend greatly on yields and geography, and the wines range from bold, fruity and easy-drinking to intense and ageable, like the famed Penfolds Grange. Often bottled on its own, in Australia Syrah is also can be blended with Grenache and Mourvèdre, as in the Southern Rhône, and is increasingly combined with Cabernet Sauvignon. Syrah has also been steadily increasing in popularity in California, thanks to a group of advocates called the Rhône Rangers. Its most successful iterations come from the Central and Sonoma Coasts, where winemakers are pushing boundaries and creating some incredible wines. In recent years Syrah has also found a number of proponents in Washington State, which is definitely a region to watch for this variety.


- 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.


- 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.
Alcohol Content (%): 13