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The living soils at Clos du Joncuas produce wines of great character, and we are happy to have a new shipment arriving this week, featuring the 2016 and 2020 Gigondas, the 2019 Seguret and Vacqueyras Rouge and the 2021 Seguret Blanc not to mention their sensational 2021 Gigondas Rosé!
Clos du Joncuas, founded in 1920 by Pierre Auguste Chastan, has farmed with organic methods from the very beginning (depuis toujours) and has been officially organic since 1980. Currently run by sisters Dany and Carole Chastan, the estate's Gigondas vines are on slopes below the Dentelles de Montmirail, on soils of clay with dolomite and gypsum over the limestone of the Dentelles, and average 40 to 90 years old. Vinifications here are entirely old-school; whole-clusters fermented with wild yeasts in cement and aged in old barrels. Both in their farming and winemaking, they are the Domaine Gonon of Gigondas!
We'd like to feature the outstanding 2019 Vacqueyras today, which is surely one of the finest values in the southern Rhone. Primarily Grenache, with Mourvedre and Syrah from stony garrigue limestone soils on "Les Aubes," dense soils on "Les Garrigues" and stony limestone soils on "Caveau," concrete vat vinification for 18-29 days and aged in concrete vat and old barrels for 12 months, bottled unfined and unfiltered. Always a favorite of Livingstone-Learmonth in drinkrhone, here's our review from last year: "A fabulous wine from the Southern Rhone, the 2019 La Font de Papier Vacqueyras from Clos du Joncuas displays a fine equilibrium between black fruits, tapenade, and a pungent saline soil signature. The robe straddles the border between dark ruby and purple. The nose is a bit backwards on opening, but time in the glass reveals aromas of plum skin, cassis, game, garrigue, and forest floor. The palate is warm, concentrated, and structured with black fruits, olive, and faint licorice flavors giving way to a salty core and a ripe, if somewhat tannic frame. This displays good energy and freshness with fine balance and drive." Open in advance if drinking now, this will benefit from another 5 to 10 years in the cellar.
The 2016 Gigondas is a classic wine from an excellent vintage, drinking beautifully now, it will soften and develop further over the next ten to fifteen years. The 2020 Gigondas is a new arrival, showing a bit less alcohol and more freshness then recent vintages. Decanting is advised - this very elegant wine will offer delicious early drinking and for the next ten-plus years.
While we enjoy the spicy, complex fruit of the Seguret Rouge, we are also big fans of their Seguret Blanc, made primarily from Clairette, with many of the vines over 100 years-old - it's a very complex and distinctive white that is a excellent food pairing with full-flavored fish dishes and middle-eastern cuisine.
Which brings us to the rare and wonderful 2021 Gigondas Rosé! Imagine Matthieu and Bernard Baudry making a rosé in the south of France and you have this wine - of course with some density of fruit and a supple, sapid palate, but with surprisingly elegant, complex aromas and delicacy at the same time. Enjoy this beautiful rosé as an aperitif but it's a great "food" wine with salads, grilled fish, even roast chicken and pork dishes - enjoy over the next two to three years!
The Clos du Joncuas remains "under the radar" in the US, but the great farming and traditional wine-making of the Chastan sisters produces some of the most distinctive wines of the Southern Rhone!
The wines have arrived at our warehouse, and will be available for pick-up/shipping on Friday, 9/23.
10% case/mixed case discount applies
Clos du Joncuas, founded in 1920 by Pierre Auguste Chastan, has always farmed with natural methods and has been officially organic since 1980. Currently run by sisters Dany and Carole Chastan, the estate's Gigondas vines are on slopes below the Dentelles de Montmirail on soils of clay with dolomite and gypsum over the limestone of the Dentelles and average 40 to 90 years old. 80% Grenache with Mourvedre, Cinsault and Syrah, whole cluster fermentation in vat with 12 months aging in large old barrels. 2020 is a great vintage at the Clos du Joncuas, a bit brighter and more elegant than the 2019, with high-toned black fruit, mineral, spice and licorice aromas. The palate is elegant and fresh showing deep supple black fruits with hints of graphite, garrigue and brown spice. A few days after opening, the wine has deepened impressively with pure blackberry, bitter chocolate and licorice aromas, great density on the palate with black fruit liqueur, red currant, earth and anise. A beautiful wine! Drink this over the next 10 to 15 years, it will give elegant early drinking, served a bit cool. David Lillie
(Tasted January 2023: Lovely nose, perfect balance, great finish, more structured than the 2015, hold a few more years) 80% Grenache with Mourvedre, Cinsault and Syrah, on Triassic clay/limestone soils, always farmed organically. Whole cluster fermentation in vat with 12 months aging in large old barrels. The 2016 is another beautiful Gigondas from the Clos du Joncuas, perhaps with less fat and density than the 2015 but quite elegant and more Burgundian in style. The aromas sing of black cherry liqueur, licorice, black olive and garrigue; the palate is dense and focused with blackberry, cherry, black olive, bitter chocolate and earth with nice sappy length with firm acidity. Drinking well now, decant if possible, or hold for five years, then drink until about 2035. David Lillie
This is a beautiful Gigondas Rosé from our organic friends at Clos du Joncuas. Pretty bright pink/orange color, aromas of raspberry, tart cherry, blood orange, peach skin and rose, a bit fresher and brighter than the last two vintages. Full, crisp palate with pretty red fruits and firm acidity. Long finish with tart cherry, peach, earth and citrusy acids. A bit lighter and better balanced than the 2019 and 2020, and very young - it should open up nicely over the next two years. It's delicious now though, and very food-friendly – serve with grilled fish and white meats, salade nicoise, vegetarian dishes and Provençal foods. A great rosé to enjoy all year-round!
(Arrives 10/19) From 80% Grenache with Syrah and Mourvedre, grown on gravelly limestone terraces, always farmed organically, whole-cluster fermention and aged in concrete vats. A fabulous wine from the Southern Rhone, the 2019 La Font de Papier Vacqueyras from Clos du Joncuas displays a fine equilibrium between black fruits, tapenade, and a pungent saline soil signature. The robe straddles the border between dark ruby and purple. The nose is a bit backwards on opening, but time in the glass reveals aromas of plum skin, cassis, game, garrigue, and forest floor. The palate is warm, concentrated, and structured with black fruits, olive, and faint licorice flavors giving way to a salty core and ripe, if somewhat tannic frame. This displays good energy and freshness with fine balance and drive. Very good with pan-roasted loin of lamb and white beans, though this isn’t so structured that a grilled tuna steak with tapenade would suffer for the pairing. Delicious, though a couple of years on its side will surely be rewarded. I’ve learned that a few bottles of southern Rhône reds in the wine fridge are an investment in drinking pleasure. John McIlwain
70% Grenache with Carignan, Syrah and Mourvèdre, grown in sandy soils near Gigondas, always farmed organically, hand harvested, whole-cluster wild yeast fermentation, aged in cement vat, un-fined, unfiltered. The 2019 shows a bright garnet/black color with aromas of plum and violet that segue into tart cherry and raspberry. The palate shows nice density of lovely cherry and berry fruits that are bright and lively but nicely ripe and concentrated as well. Serve cool with grilled foods this fall and winter or with a pork stew or Morrocan tagine. Delicious now but will benefit from 3 - 5 years of cellaring.