2007 Domaine les Pallières "Les Racines" Gigondas
The sun-bleached landscape of Gigondas in France's southern Rhone has always been one of my favorite haunts. I love the wines too, especially the Gigondas from the venerable Domaine les Pallières. But when Frédéric and Daniel Brunier of the Châteauneuf-du-Pape property Vieux Télégraphe and wine importer Kermit Lynch took over the estate in 1998, under the guidance of these Rhone experts the estate's wines went up a notch or two.
Made from the oldest vines on the estate, the 2007 bottling "Les Racines" is dense and inky, with a powerful perfume of wild herbs and berries that leads you back to the glass again and again. Each sip reveals something new — a hint of licorice, the taste of raspberries or black cherries. Yet for all its power, this blend of Grenache with a small proportion of Syrah, Cinsault and Clairette is remarkably supple and lush.
Drink it with rich, juicy grilled meats, spicy barbecued ribs, a classic beef daube or duck breast.
If you can't find "Les Racines," look for the other cuvée "Les Terrasse du Diable," which may be more available. Either one is terrific.
— S. Irene Virbila
Region: Southern Rhone, France
Price: About $35
Style: Rich and lush
What it goes with: Grilled meats, barbecued ribs, daube, duck breast
Where to find it: John and Pete's Fine Wines & Spirits in West Hollywood, (310) 657-3080, http://www.johnandpetes.com; K&L Wine Merchants in Hollywood, (323) 464-9463, http://www.klwines.com; and Wine Exchange in Orange, (714) 974-1454, http://www.winex.com