Domaine de Piaugier 'La Grange de Piaugier' Cotes du Rhone 2021

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Product Details
Producer: Domaine de Piaugier
Country: France
Region: Rhone Valley
Sub Region: Cotes du Rhone
Grape Variety: Grenache Noir/Garnacha Tinto
Farming: Organic
ABV: 13%
Style: Red Wine
Classification: Cotes du Rhone AOC

Domaine de Piaugier 'La Grange de Piaugier' Cotes du Rhone has the perfect balance of bramble, hedgerow fruits, pepper spice and underlying freshness. It is an elegant and vibrant wine made from a Grenache dominated blend that also includes Syrah and Carignan. It is aged in cement tanks rather than oak which lets the purity of the fruit sing and what a tune it plays.

Domaine de Piaugier exudes the sort of rustic French charm that you’d expect from a small family-owned winery whose owners spend more time in the vineyards looking after the small details rather than online buying new cushions for the sofas for their state-of-the-art tasting room. The winery is in the historic town of Sablet and consists of 30 hectares of vineyards, aged between 30 – 55 years old, which are spread over several parcels on varying soils within the Sablet, Gigondas and wider Cotes du Rhone regions. It is one of the Domaine’s great assets having varying parcels of grapes from different areas which are all vinified separately to retain their unique characteristics before either being bottled on their own or carefully blended to make seriously complex and elegant wines.

The Domaine is owned and run by Jean-Marc and Sophie Autran along with their daughter Maude who now farm 30 hectares of vineyards which includes the original six hectares which Jean-Marc’s great grandfather, Alphonse worked during WW2. It was Alphonse who built the current winery in 1947 after getting the hump with the rather steep hill which his original winery sat upon. With no Land Rover Defender and just a couple of lazy mules to transport his wine he opted to relocate to lower ground within easier reach of the travelling merchants. The original winery was called Tenebi which is now the name of their superb 100% Counoise which is a must try for all wine lovers.

Sablet is a pretty, medieval town and one of the handful of villages that can affix its name to the Cotes du Rhone Villages appellation which is a big step up in both quality and value from the more generic Cotes du Rhone appellation. With lower yields and a distinct terrior on sandy soils, Sablet, like Gigondas and Vinsobres, should probably be an AOC, but it’s not for me to get involved in the politics of French wine law! Although the reds from Sablet are generous and full bodied they tend to have a marked purity and underlying finesse about them which can be attributed to the sandy soils and whole-bunch, destemmed fermentation. The Piaugier wines hit this exact spot for us with wonderful depth of varietal flavour, rich texture but freshness and elegance on the finish. The whites are equally impressive and offer wonderful value compared to Burgundy.

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