2010 Domaine Michel & Stéphane Ogier "La Belle Helene" Côte-Rôtie(1.5L) (Pre-Arrival)

SKU #1408479 100 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 The 2010 Cote Rotie La Belle Helene is perfection. In this vintage, Ogier cut back the barrel aging time from 32 months in largely new oak casks to 18 months. Ogier’s remarkable flexibility depending on vintage conditions and the quality of the fruit is admirable. He thinks this may be the greatest bottle of wine he has ever made, and it’s hard to disagree. An inky/purple color is followed by notes of pen ink, graphite, forest floor, licorice and abundant black and blue fruits. There is little evidence of new oak because of the extravagant richness and wealth of ripe fruit. The tannins, acidity, alcohol and wood are perfectly integrated into this exceptional wine. It will benefit from 5-6 years of cellaring and keep for 25-30+ years. (RP)  (12/2012)

98 points Wine Spectator

 Densely packed, with a while to go before unwinding fully, this features a core of fig, blackberry and plum pâte de fruit notes held in check by a thick wall of smoldering tobacco and charcoal accents. Loamy in feel, with cut and precision driving the finish, this delivers details of iron and black tea throughout. Best from 2017 through 2035. (JM)  (11/2014)

95 points Vinous

 nky purple. Cherry-cola, licorice and incense on the explosively perfumed nose. Stains the palate with sweet dark fruit liqueur flavors that are enlivened by intense spice and floral notes. Sappy and strikingly concentrated, with superb finishing power and energy. There are tannins here but they're buried beneath this wine's abundant, dense fruit. (JR)  (3/2013)

94 points James Suckling

 This has a brooding attitude and a darker color in the glass. It offer coal smoke, tarry notes, black fruits, star anise and even brown spices. On the palate it's assertive and powerful, delivering mouth-filling red- and dark- plum fruits; it's sappy and stony, and long tannins press the finish deep. Still needs time. Best from 2018 and for a decade at least.  (10/2016)


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Price: $1,199.99

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Additional Information:

Varietal:

Shiraz/Syrah

- 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.
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.
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.
Specific Appellation:

Cote Rotie