Domaine de la Janasse Vin de Pays de la Principauté d'Orange Terre de Bussière 2009
"The old-vine 100% Grenache cuvee, the 2009 Cotes du Rhone Les Garrigues (from 80- to 90-year-old vines) is sensational. Gorgeous levels of garrigue, kirsch, creosote, licorice, damp earth and lavender are all present in this dense ruby/purple wine. Topping the scales at 15.4% alcohol, this is a blockbuster Cotes du Rhone to drink over the next 7-8 years. (By the way, the 2007 Cotes du Rhone Les Garrigues is absolutely out of this world at present, should anyone still have some.)...93" WA 10/11 "A totally bombastic, thrill ride of a Côtes du Rhône, the 2009 Domaine de la Janasse Les Garrigues (100% Grenache from a single plot of 80+ year old vines) delivers a gorgeous kirsch liqueur-like quality to go with notions of licorice, rolled stone minerality, and loads of spice-box nuances on the nose. Full-bodied, exuberant, and ripe, yet also finely built, lightly textured, and beautifully proportioned, this gorgeous 2009 will stand toe to toe with any number of more prestigious Châteauneuf-du-Papes. Already accessible and delicious, it should continue to shine for upwards of a decade...93" RR 12/12
An extremely pleasant surprise from a mixed case purchased from Wine Library - I think this bottle was about $12. Rich, fruity and smooth red - dangerously easy to drink. Plush mouthfeel, nice acidity (paired well with a steak and some dark chocolate), not too tannic. Tasted more like an Aussie shiraz than a French blend, but I'm not complaining. Really nice wine and a great buy.
External Reviews for Domaine de la Janasse Vin de Pays de la Principauté d'Orange Terre de Bussière
92-94 Points "The 2009 Chateauneuf du Pape Chaupin is aged in foudre (2/3) and 600-liter demi-muids (1/3). It may not reach the heights of the sensational 2007, but it is a gorgeous effort that represents Grenache at its finest. Intense black cherry liqueur notes intermixed with lavender, licorice, crushed rock and floral characteristics cascade from the glass of this unctuously textured, full-bodied wine with silky tannins and low acidity. Fleshy and full, it is a terrific example of Grenache from a great terroir. Drink it over the next 10-15 years." Wine Advocate, #191 Oct 2010, Robert Parker "Christophe Sabon, his sister Isabelle, and their father operate one of the great Chateauneuf du Pape winemaking estates. They continue to invest in new vineyards as well as state-of-the-art winemaking equipment. Moreover, they never seem to be satisfied with the status quo, and are constantly challenging their past performances. Their 2007s were unbelievably good wines, the 2008s were among the finest wines of the appellation, and the 2009 vintage is another resounding success for them. The style is progressive, combining the best of traditional winemaking with the finest of a more modern approach. The wines all reflect their Provencal origins, only tiny quantities of new oak are used, and then only with the two grape varietals that can benefit from it (such as Syrah and Mourvedre). This is also a fabulous source for top wine values as the following tasting notes demonstrate. Christophe Sabon told me that the white varietals he works with tend to come from sandy and gravelly soils, so there is more finesse. Both Chateauneuf du Pape blanc cuvees are well-worth a search of the marketplace. Interestingly, Sabon achieves excellent acidity in his white Chateauneufs despite the fact that they go through 100% malolactic fermentation, an unusual practice for white Chateauneuf du Papes. His objective is to bottle them unfiltered, which he is able to do. The wines are also extremely low in SO2. As I wrote last year, Christophe Sabon made two of the finest Chateauneuf du Papes of 2008. The estate's third cuvee, the Chaupin, was declassified into the traditional wine, which no doubt benefitted from it. Sabon told me there was more Mourvedre used in the blend in order to provide more structure and support to the Grenache in 2008. In 2009, all three cuvees were produced. I always think the harvest at Janasse must be one of the most difficult to manage as they have 200 acres of vines with over 200 separate parcels spread throughout the southern Rhone. Christophe told me it takes nearly two full days to just drive around and sample all the different vineyards to see where they are in terms of maturity." Wine Advocate, #191 Oct 2010, Robert Parker