Browse Tag


CdR, stat

Texier 2012 Côtes-du-Rhône (Rhône) — All the classic characteristics dialed down to about 7, without sacrificing anything except unnecessary force. This is why one drinks Texier. (7/16)


Texier 2006 Côtes-du-Rhône (Rhône) – Poke around in old wine books (and not even that old…say, the 90s or so) and when you come across the generic description of what a good Côtes-du-Rhône offers, you’ll find much of what’s in this wine. Gently roasted fruit – maybe calling it braised would be better – with warming soil influences and a fair bit of fully-integrated spice; nothing too aggressive, just subtle French shadings rather than Indian exotica. I love this, especially at its absurdly generous price. Or rather it might be more accurate to say that I loved this wine, because this is my last bottle. (12/11)

Roussanne to judgment

Texier 2010 Côtes-du-Rhône Roussanne (Rhône) – When I was first introduced to Texier’s wines, back in the late 90s, his CdR blanc was a regular hit-it-out-of-the-park surprise for Rhône aficionados, especially at its ridiculously low price. And then, due to vagaries of the market or whatever, it disappeared from my life. Well, it hasn’t gotten much more expensive, but it has gotten even better. Rolling spiced stone fruit, with much more life and verve than is typical for the genre, and a pretty twist of flowers as it finishes. Delicious. (11/11)

Don’t mess

Texier 2004 Côtes-du-Rhône (Rhône) – Having consumed a fair quantity of this over the last little while, I guess the age of the wine never fully occurred to me. But now, the difference in supple development between this and other CdR made in recognizably similar ways makes sense. I don’t know if I’d call the wine’s rich palette (yes, that’s the spelling I intend) fully mature, but it’s certainly mature enough to be interesting. (7/11)

Gramenon, holdenon

Gramenon 2009 Côtes-du-Rhône “l’Élémentaire de Gramenon” (Rhône) – Firm tannin leftover from creating the leather sofa on which this wine lounges. Blackberry fruit-leather as well, plus an herbal stew. This tastes as much like a chinato as it does a Côtes-du-Rhône, and that’s an interesting conflation of styles. Challenging. (11/10)

Olivet Oyl

Clos du Mont-Olivet 2007 Côtes-du-Rhône Montueil-la-Levade (Rhône) – Is there a hefty mourvèdre component here? (I suppose I could just check the web, but it’s more fun guessing.) The delicious, sweaty meativore component is just too evocative, no matter the source. This tastes far more mature than its vintage would indicate, but it’s still so structured and masculine that I think more age wouldn’t hurt. On the other hand, why wait. It’s absolutely compelling now. (11/10)

Us and Brézème

Texier 2008 Côtes-du-Rhône Brézème (Rhône) – The terroir that carried so much of the early (American) hype for Texier probably did more than any of his wines to permanently offend certain segments of the curious. No one familiar with the wine need ask why, but for the rest: it’s the acid, of course. That fierce, brittle, insistent acid. This is the Cantillon of Côtes-du-Rhône, and the uncompromising nature of it means that, at times, even fans will struggle to wrap their palates around it. There’s so much to recommend here…soil and sharp fruit, delineation and character…but either beat it back with acidic food or stick it in a dark corner of the cellar. Of course, only one of these things actually tames the acidity. The other just dresses it with different, and ultimately more interesting, outerwear. (9/10)

It’s not easy being green

Terres d’Avignon “Kermit Lynch” 2008 Côtes-du-Rhône (Rhône) – As easy as always, but there’s some angst and teenaged crankiness to it, and I don’t think it’s just a stage. Rough-ridden fruit, lightly-chewed and vaguely herbal, with the sweetmeat pong of Rhôneishness. But it’s just…a little odd. (7/10)

The united colors

Ferraton 2008 Côtes-du-Rhône Blanc “Samorëns” (Rhône) – Surprisingly vivacious, to the extent that white Rhônes not labeled clairette can ever be. Melon, almond, tan earth, and scallop coral, with good density but life and light within. A fun, easy-drinking wine. (7/10)