Gabriel Meffre ‘Sainte Catherine’ Gigondas 2014
Grape Varietals: A blend of Grenache, Syrah & Mourvèdre
Growing Region: Gigondas, Rhône Valley - France
Head Winemaker: Véronique Torcolacci
Back in 2018 I had the pleasure to spend a few days with the team at Gabriel Meffre in Gigondas - France. Where this wine estate has a tightly-intwined history with the region - since being founded in 1936. During my visit I had a comprehensive tasting of their full range, which is substantial in number and expressions. It was a pleasure to spend time tasting them with Véronique - who not only crafted these wines. But has an incredible knowledge of the region, the soils and traditional varietals which cling to the sides of this rugged and mountainous area.
I had the opportunity to visit these picture-postcard vineyards that were used for this wine, with their 40 year old vines (with some new plantings in-between) growing in an ancient mix of marl limestone with sand and clay. The bush vines grow in a Mediterranean climate, which are significantly influenced by the dry Mistral wind that is key to their varietal character and balance.
The grapes were hand-harvested with strict sorting of the grapes both in the vineyard and back at the winery. A respectful fermentation lasted for approximately 3 weeks, resulting in a lifted expression of the fruit aromas and flavours with no extraction of harsh tannins. Then around 35% of the final cuvée was aged in 1 and 2-year old French oak barrels for 11 months of maturation, before being blended back with the vat-aged portion.
As you pour this wine into a glass you will be greeted by a deep red colour with a copper hue. This is a blend of Grenache, Syrah and Cinsault, resulting in classic aromas of red fruits, violets, dried herbs, a touch of allspice, nutmeg, cinnamon and floral notes. All of the lifted characters flow onto the approachable palate celebrating those bright berry fruits with balanced acidity with smooth tannins, subtle oak and a deft mineral seam, adding a regional detail. This blend is well structured, with a medium to rich palate intensity and a lingering dry finish.
This 2014 Gabriel Meffre 'Saint Catherine' Gigondas has 13% Alc./vol. No decanting required and serve in an appropriate glass at 16-17°C.
A balanced traditional Rhône Valley red blend, with a vibrant & versatile appeal.
Drinking perfectly this season; plus will hold nicely for another 2-3 years.
FOOD PAIRING SUGGESTIONS:
Perfect wine pairing with mild red meats, rabbit, slow roasted pork & lamb, mild pasta & pizza, varied tapas’, earthy vegetarian cuisine and hard cheeses - enjoy.