The Tasting Panel magazine

May 2014

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44  /  the tasting panel  / may 2014 Sacha Lichine 2013 Grenache Rosé, Single Blend Rosé, Vin de France ($12) Fresh and juicy with lovely pale pink color and lush texture; bright raspberry and good acidity; lush and clean, bright and long. 88 Caves d'Esclans 2013 Whispering Angel, Côtes de Provence, France ($22) Juicy and bright with racy acidity, fresh raspberry and cherry; smooth and balanced, long and charming. Grenache, Rolle (Vermentino), Cinsault, Syrah, and Tibouren. 89 Chateau d'Esclans 2013 Côtes de Provence, France ($35) Ripe and elegant with depth and rich texture; smooth, lush and vibrant; long and balanced. Grenache and Rolle (Vermentino) 90 Château d'Esclans 2012 Les Clans, Côtes de Provence, France ($65) Fresh and sprightly with depth, balance and great texture; elegant, long and juicy; complex. Grenache and Rolle (Vermentino). 91 Château d'Esclans 2011 Les Clans, Côtes de Provence, France ($65) Rich and smooth with deep, ripe flavors of raspberry; lush texture and lovely balance, elegant and long. Grenache and Rolle (Vermentino). 90 Château d'Esclans 2012 Garrus, Côtes de Provence, France ($90) Very pale; fragrant and mellow; dense and rich with lovely texture and a faint hint of toast; Grenache and Rolle (Vermentino). 92 Château d'Esclans 2011 Garrus, Côtes de Provence, France ($90) Deep and intense with rich minerals, ripe berries and elegant hints of toasty oak; generous, long and balanced. Grenache and Rolle (Vermentino). 92 Sacha Lichine and Château d'Esclans wines are imported by Shaw-Ross International Importers. TRENDING C M Y CM MY CY CMY K d-KRUf-prt-TastingPanel-May2014-fullpgAd-v1.pdf 1 4/15/14 2:46 PM R osé is the drink of the season, if not the year, and Sacha Lichine's wide portfolio of pink-tinged offerings is one-stop shopping for the novice or already ardent rosé enthusiast . The Bordeaux-born wine guru and businessman grew up talking shop. In his school days, Sacha worked summers at his family's Bordeaux property, Château Prieuré Lichine, owned by his father, the celebrate wine writer Alexis Lichine. By the time Sacha reached his early 20s, he was already organiz- ing luxury French wine tours on a grand scale and establishing a Sacha Lichine Estate Selections for wines from Burgundy and the Rhône. But where Sacha saw most opportunity and beauty was in rosé—the once-neglected style that he has done so much to revivify and popularize. Acquiring Château d'Esclans in Provence, Lichine poured his passion for and knowl- edge of this wine style into the project. Using traditional Rhône varieties such as Grenache and Syrah, Sacha focuses on clearly New World winemaking. All the Château d'Esclans wines are made in a state-of-the-art, temperature-controlled facility that allows minute control over fermentation. Consulting enologist Patrick Léon, formerly the winemaker at Château Mouton-Rothschild, works with Lichine to create three oak barrel-fermented rosés—entry-level Château d'Esclans, mid-tier Les Clans and prestige cuvée Garrus—each a blend of estate-grown Grenache and Rolle (known as Vermentino in Italy). Garrus is reputedly the world's priciest (non-sparkling) rosé, currently selling for around ten dollars less than its original $100 suggested retail price. "When I brought the $100 rosé to retailers, they all said the same thing: Are you crazy?" Sacha told me recently. "I can't sell a $100 rosé. But I'll take two cases for myself." Since then, Garrus has become a cult wine, the pinnacle of a category that continues to grow in popularity with consumers and sommeliers. On the other end of the scale, Lichine also make delightful, affordably-priced non-estate rosés (and other wines) under his Sacha Lichine label. Sacha decided to become the king of rosé and he's succeeded. The wines are absolutely stunning, as my tasting notes show. Although certainly appropriate as spring and summertime wines, these rosés are suitable for year-round drinking—before, during or after a meal—and with all kinds of cuisine. The King of Rosé SACHA LICHINE IS THE UNDISPUTED MASTER OF THIS INCREASINGLY POPULAR CATEGORY by Anthony Dias Blue 3 Sacha Lichine at Château d'Esclans, his wine estate in Provence. TP0514_034-71.indd 44 4/24/14 11:02 PM

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