Maison Les Alexandrins Syrah - 2019
It is in its French birthplace, between the towns of Vienne and Valence, that Syrah fully expresses itself. For some people, Syrah originates from Shiraz in Iran and was brought back by the Crusades. For others, Syrah appeared in the third century during the Roman Empire, at the time of Emperor Probus. As for Viognier, the latest scientific research proved that it originates from the Northern Rhône Valley.
The substratum of the right bank of the Rhône River is composed of primary rocks such as Gneiss and granite from old volcanic rocks from the Massif Central. Its sandy-clay soils are also composed of granite elements. The important amount of granite gives the wine a powerful and rustic character as well as minerality. The geological components of the left bank of the Rhône are more varied. There is granite soil as well as some plots covered in pebbles remaining from the glaciers. The pebbles have been rounded and polished by the Rhône and keep the heat of the day and give it back at night. This helps the concentration of sugars and aromas.
Situated between the semi-continental climate of Burgundy and the Mediterranean climate of Provence, the winters are continental: cold, wind and little rain. The summers are Mediterranean: hot with storms and little wind. Thanks to the contrast in the climate, this Syrah reveals intense aromas of red fruit and spices and a beautiful minerality.
After a mild winter and spring, conditions were perfect when everything changed on June 15th: a hailstorm destroyed a large part of the Crozes-Hermitage vines. Then we experienced a heatwave in the summer, one of the hottest of the decade, which caused some berries to burn. Our team’s efforts paid back fortunately and we managed to save part of the vineyard in great sanitary condition. And if Nature is sometimes harsh, it can also be generous. The harvest went perfectly well and although the quantities are limited, this vintage promises to be magnificent, despite a climatically and morally complicated year. The years in 9 regularly mark the memory of winegrowers and this vintage was no exception.
The vineyard, composed of young vines of an average age of 15 years, is planted on terraces. It covers the hinterland of the Nothern Côtes du Rhône. It is situated on localities of the Southern Rhône, Loire, Isère, northern Drôme and north Ardèche.
The grapes are cold-macerated before fermenting to develop the fruit. Maceration and fermentation for a fortnight with pumping over the first few days and then pumping down towards the end. Part of the wine is aged for 5-6 months in stainless steel tanks. This type of tank helps keep the freshness and fruit. The other part is aged in oak tanks for the same amount of time to help extract the tannins.
This wine is immediately seductive with its easy-drinking character with notes of red berries and slightly peppery. On the palate, the northern Syrah is full of fruit and liveliness, well balanced by tannins nicely softened by Viognier.
This wine is to be drunk now at a temperature of 16°C.
Our food match: This wine will match simple, convivial meals such as grilled meats, cheeses or even an exotic or spicy cuisine.
Syrah : 95 %
Viognier : 5 %