The Tasting Panel magazine

January / February 2018

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 51 of 124

january/february 2018  /  the tasting panel  /  51 The group of Miami area buyers stunned in their branded Rhône Valley Vineyard sunglasses. Pictured are Daphné Payan, Brand Ambassador for Rhône Valley Vineyards (far left); Carol López-Bethel, Swirl Wine Consulting (second from left); back row, Liza Meli, BarMeli; Julian Romero, Sommelier, Frenchman's Creek Country Club; Maria Martinez Romero, Lost Tree Country Club; Lyn Farmer, WSET educator and author of this article; Timothy J. Bubar, Faena Restaurant Group; Diego Rech, Villa Azur; Marija Mijic, The Matador Room; front row, Osvaldo Gomez, La Petit Maison; Haunah Klein, Boulud Sud/db Bistro Moderne; Jennifer Schmitt, Advanced Sommelier, Starr Restaurants; Jennifer Wagoner, Stripsteak by Michael Mina; Brian Grandison, Hakkasan; Susie Yoonathan, Consultant; and Gonzalo Hernandez, Consultant. Jennifer Schmitt, Advanced Sommelier and Beverage Manager at Starr Restaurant Group (at right), tastes the 2012 Ventoux, Château Pesquié, Artemia. She praised the wine's "savory and long- lasting" finish in her notes. Hermitage, Cave de Tain, Grand Classique, 2015 The legendary wines of Hermitage come from just 338 acres (or 137 hectares as of 2016) of vines in the Northern Rhône. The appellation primarily produces red wines made from Syrah (although the law allows up to 15% white wine to be blended in, this is almost never done). White wine made from Roussanne and Marsanne comprises about 28 percent of the total wine produced in 2016 and has always been in great demand: In the early 1800s, Hermitage Blanc was the most sought-after and expensive wine in the world. Total production in Hermitage varies per year: In 2016, 3,292 hectoliters of wine, or roughly 36,212 cases, were produced. Despite its small size, Hermitage has long served as the business hub of the Northern Rhône and is home to many of the region's legendary producers. The Cave de Tain coop- erative is based in the area's main town, Tain, and has been producing wine for more than a century; the cooperative recently completed a 10-million-euro renovation to keep its equipment and facility up to date. Drawing on sites farmed by dozens of small growers, the Cave de Tain sources grapes from the full range of Hermitage soils, from granite to stony clay and sand, and thus provides a wonderfully-integrated example of what Marsanne can achieve in the Rhône. Normally, Hermitage Blanc requires several years to begin showing its luscious finesse, but this 100% Marsanne from Cave de Tain is already offering appealing notes of honey, peach, and lemon (the wine is notable, too, for its creamy texture). All in all, it's a surprisingly affordable example of all the pleasures of Hermitage Blanc, with qualities that will only become more pronounced and enjoyable with age. Tasting Notes: "Ripe pear, marzipan, toasted almond; rounded tex- ture and mouthfeel; moderate acidity and a waxiness. Delicate florality on the finish." —Jennifer Wagoner, Lead Sommelier, StripSteak by Michael Mina "Citrus, lemon zest, light honey, black tea, and oaky aromas like coconut. On the palate, slightly oaky; malolactic or secondary with bread/yeast, pears, and ripe green apple." —Julian Romero, Sommelier/Bartender, Lost Tree Club

Articles in this issue

Archives of this issue

view archives of The Tasting Panel magazine - January / February 2018