The stunning Côtes du Rhône “Petit Ours Brun” (little brown bear) tastes like a youthful Cornas. The grapes come from a parcel that winemaker Matthieu Barret calls “no man’s land"; it lies just between the official boundaries of Cornas and St. Joseph. The wine is 100% Syrah from 40-year-old, low-yielding vines. Oh, and it’s also certified biodynamic. The taste is cool fruit, earth, bruised blackberries and that indefinable wild quality that makes Syrah from this part of the Rhone pure magic. It’s a young, bright-talking cousin to Barret’s brilliant Domaine du Coulet Cornas.
Drink it now with butterflied leg of lamb, beef daube with black olives or a thick, well-marbled steak on the grill.
Region: Rhone Valley
Price: About $19
Style: Rich and full-bodied
What it goes with: Butterflied leg of lamb, beef daube, grilled steak