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"Intensity, elegance, harmony, sensuality"
Wine Region: Rhone Valley - France
Grape: 100% Syrah.
The ‘Maison Rouge’ comes from a 2-hectare plot located at the southern part of the Côte-Rôtie appellation. The average age of the vines is 50 years old; they grow in sandy, granite soil on steep hillsides. This wine is 100% Syrah, and the fermentation takes place in oak vats. After fermentation, the wine goes into barrel, 30% of which are new, for 24 months. Annual production is approximately 15,000 bottles per year.
Tasting notes: Dark fruits, oriental spices, smoke, liquorice, cigar-boxes, chocolate, black pepper… This Côte-Rôtie launched by Christine has sealed the Estate’s reputation, as much as Vernon: from mature Syrah vines in the Maison Rouge locality, it has an incomparable class! Structured, perfectly balanced, it is as sensuous and full-bodied, as it is spicy and enchanting. The tannins are assertive, but the mastery of its vinification creates an exceptionally silky, velvety palate.
Expert Ratings: Vinous 94 / 100
“Inky ruby. A highly perfumed, expansive bouquet evokes ripe cherry, black raspberry and cola, along with complicating notes of candied flowers, incense and smoky minerals. Sappy and expressive on the palate, offering intense red and dark berry preserve and violet pastille flavors underscored and sharpened by juicy acidity. Shows excellent focus and fruit-driven thrust on the youthfully tannic finish, which hangs on with serious tenacity. The quality of Christine Vernay's red wines has steadily been approaching that of her Condrieus in recent years, which is really saying something.” - Jancis Robinson
About the winery: Domaine Georges Vernay is one of the oldest and most famous estates in Condrieu. Georges highly contributed to the reintroduction of Viognier on the hillsides of the region when in 1960’s the appellation used to cover only 8 hectares.
Today the domaine is managed by Georges’ daughter Christine and her husband Paul. The vineyard covers 8 hectares in Condrieu, 2.5 hectares in Côte-Rôtie and 1.5 hectares in Saint-Joseph and the rest being located in IGP Collines Rhôdaniennes and Côtes-du-Rhône. Their Condrieu are made from vineyards in the heart of the appellation and all express the purest; most restrained expression of the Viognier grape.
For over 20 years, Christine Vernay has used organic farming methods. Considering herself as the custodian of a land for which she is responsible for caring, she has long been committed to organic farming, long before it was fashionable or urgent to do so. She has now successfully demonstrated that, while it is difficult to work the steeply sloping vineyards using organic farming, it is not impossible.
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