Maison Les Alexandrins Côte-Rôtie Rouge - 2020

Maison Les Alexandrins Côte-Rôtie Rouge - 2020

Maison Les Alexandrins, a signature modern in approach and contemporary in style. This wine owes its remarkable complexity and strength to Syrah, very much the king of grapes in the Côte-Rôtie appellation. An elegant, perfectly balanced wine with velvety tannins; smoky and black fruit flavours highlight its fine structure.
Description

A partnership between three winegrowers from the Rhône Valley – Nicolas Jaboulet, Guillaume Sorrel and Alexandre Caso – Maison les Alexandrins produces northern wines in a style at once contemporary and timeless, always from exceptional vineyards unearthed by Alexandre Caso, a specialist in the terroirs of the northern Rhône Valley. Classics with a twist, these wines and how they are aged and blended are guided by the quest for perfect harmony from a very young age. Most of our vines grow in the south of the appellation, in the Côte Blonde and Coteau de Tupin sectors.

Terroir

The granite parent rock is covered in places by schist but also by sand and chalky soil.

The vintage

After the hail damage of 2019, we had to nurse our vineyards back to health with a range of gentle but complementary nutrients. This made 2020 a technically exacting year, especially since the weather reserved many surprises for us. Spring was extraordinarily hot and dry and, despite a short break in June when some welcome rain fell, summer saw a continuation of drought conditions right up until the harvest. With a high risk of mildew at the start of the season, constant and unpredictable winds, powdery mildew half way through the season and the threat of high temperatures and scorching, we were spared nothing, and it required a major effort to cope. Fortunately, the occasional shower, fairly cool nights and morning dew meant the vines did not suffer too much from the summer heat, and all our hard work seems to have paid off with the promise of a fine vintage. To avoid the hottest moments of the day, we began picking from 6 am so as to pick the grapes while they were cool. We began with the whites on August 19 and continued with the reds through until September 16. First tastings revealed aromatic wines of great freshness, with degrees rarely exceeding 13.5°. After so many twists and turns, it is a vintage that reverts to origin in a very “Northern Rhône” style, after the mediterranean vintages of 2018 and 2019.

Situation

Côte-Rôtie has been an Appellation d'Origine Contrôlée in the northern Rhône Valle since 1940. Starting life on the right bank of the Rhône, Côte-Rôtie wines forge their character from the appellation's extremely steep slopes, which in places reach gradients of over 60°. The very narrow vineyard is planted in terraces just a few dozen vines wide. Only a few kilometres from Lyon, this is the northernmost appellation of the Rhône Valley.

Process

Our aim here is to produce consistently refined wines offering elegance and finesse.
- Maceration and fermentation for about 20 days with pumping over for the first few days and then punching down towards the end.
- Ageing for 15 months in one year-old barrels and in demi-muids (60-litre capacity barrels).

Tasting notes

Beautiful deep-red colour with shiny reflections. Very elegant, the nose offers a superb aromatic bouquet with aromas of small red fruit punctuated by notes of smoked bacon and cold ash. Plenty finesse on the palate, dense, intense, suave, with silky and velvety tannins and a long finish supported by good acidity. A wine definitely under the sign of elegance.

Food and wine pairings

This wine will go perfectly with a tender lamb packed with flavour.

Serving

This wine should be decanted at least an hour before serving to reveal its fullest expression. Serve at 17°C. Drink young.

Grapes

Syrah : 98 %
Viognier : 2 %